UPDATED: Kreutz Rejects Bears Final Offer over $500k


Clipped from: blogs.suntimes.com (share this clip)

The Olin Kreutz era may be coming to an end in Chicago.   The Sun Times’ Sean Jensen is reporting that Kreutz rejected the Bears’ 1 year, $4 million “final offer.”

"The Bears didn’t make an offer to re-sign former Pro Bowl center Olin Kreutz until Thursday then issued an its best offer Saturday, a source told the Sun-Times.The one-year offer: $4 million, according to one Bears player.Asked about that figure, agent Mark Bartelstein said, “I’m not going to talk about the numbers.“But our goal all along was to get a deal done with the Bears. At this point, it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen.”"

Brad Biggs of the Tribune reports that just $500,000 separates both sides:

"They appeared to die when the Bears refused to budge from their final offer of a one-year deal for $4 million to Kreutz. Kreutz, represented by agent Mark Bartelstein, sought a one-year contract worth $4.5 million after days of tough negotiations."

If the Bears blow this over a shade over a rookie minimum salary, they’re being penny wise and dollar foolish.  When you think about some of the free agents they’ve brought in, it’s mind-boggling.  If they let Kreutz walk over $500k, it tells me they don’t really want him to be here anymore.

If this is the end of Olin’s days in the Orange and Blue, it’s a shame.  He’s the Bears’ unquestioned leader on the field and in the locker room.   The Bears drafted Kreutz out of the University of Washington in the third round in 1998.  He is a six time Pro Bowler, most recently in 2006 and a four time All Pro.  Along with long snapper Patrick Mannelly, he’s the longest tenured Chicago Bear and one of the last two holdovers from the Dave Wannstedt era.

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