The only additional news on this I've read was a tweet memo from John Clayton that said he believed the positions of the Bears and Forte going into this last fall were that Forte wanted a 5 year deal with a minimum of $20 mil guaranteed and the Bears last offer before they tagged him was a 4 year deal with $15 mil guaranteed.
That's appears to be where negotiations ended last fall and we did hear that the Bears had increased their first offer from the rumored $13-$14 mil to $15 mil. Based on all that we know from this information this is also where they stood when they tagged him.
Since then the Bears have made one more offer in an attempt to sign him. As Ric has pointed out we don't know what that offer contained. My guess, and it is a guess but a logical one, is that the last offer which Ted Phillips referred to as a "strong offer" raised the guaranteed dollars slightly. Why? It stands to reason that if they were taking one final "this is it" swing it wouldn't be for the same amount as their last offer. I may be entirely wrong but it seems logical and a reasonable assumption.
So it's if it is a reasonable assumption then I would put the guarantees in the Bears last offer between $16-$18 mil, no more, and more likely $16 or $17 than $18. Like we've talked about so many times the Bears can tag him both this year and next for a total of $17 mil and change. If that's on their mind anyway why not just guarantee the $17 mil. Unless he gets a career ending injury this year the total risk beyond that tag is $9 mil. They could eat that but it would hurt. That's about what Urlacher is likely to make in 2013.
If Matt is still stuck on his original position, and we've heard nothing that indicates that he's lowered his price, then they remain a significant distance apart. The only way this will get done is for him to lower his expectations and come the Bears way. I don't think there's one person out there fans or pros alike that believe the Bears will cave and give him that $20 mil guarantee. Not gonna happen when the hold all the cards.
It seems that Forte is basing his demands on what DWill got and the Bears their's more on what Marshawn Lynch got. I think Forte is a better back than both but most of the league agrees that both Lynch and DWill were over payed based on their track records. If that's the case then there would be no reason for the Bears to use those deals as comparables but my guess is they're at least trying to get close to what Lynch got. But DWill? No way.
I'm getting to that age where a lifetime warranty just doesn't mean as much to me anymore as an afternoon nap.
Honey Badger Don't Care. Honey Badger Don't Give a Shit.