The list now includes Brian Urlacher, Tommie Harris, Devin Hester, and Robbie Gould. All are considered one of the best players at their respective positions. None of the four have suggested holding out for a better contract, but all are absent from voluntary team workouts taking place at Halas Hall. All four players feel they are worth far more than the compensation at the tail end of their contracts.
The only player that doesn’t fit in this group is Urlacher, who already signed a blockbuster deal several years ago. However, Harris, Hester, and Gould all played out rookie contracts that pay them a yearly salary for what they will probably get as a signing bonus in a new deal.
The problem for the Bears is they really have no choice other than to sign them all. All four players help make up the core of the Bears lineup and are model examples for team players. As much as the Bears don’t want to waste the salary cap space, the time has come to reward the under paid players that have supported the rest of the team. It’s moments like these that make us realize why the Bears let Bernard Berrian go to Minnesota. A good team must balance bringing in fresh talent at reasonable contracts and paying their talented players their worth. The key for this Bears team will be rewarding their talented players and positioning skilled players from the draft to help them.
In the meantime, it looks like the Bears are hard at work with all four players to reach an agreement on contracts extensions. There has been no talk of trades or disappointment, just confidence that both sides will reach an agreement and get the season started.