Chicago Bears Countdown to Kickoff: 22 Days with Matt Forte

Chicago Bears, Matt Forte
Chicago Bears, Matt Forte / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Chicago Bears, Matt Forte
Chicago Bears, Matt Forte / Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Forte retires shortly after leaving Chicago Bears

Forte played his final year as a Bear during Fox's first with the team and ended the 2015 campaign with 1,287 total yards and seven touchdowns. After the season, Forte elected not to resign from the team and left Chicago for New York to join the Jets. There, he spent two seasons in the AFC East, where he totaled 1,750 yards and 11 touchdowns in 26 games and 17 starts. Following the 2017 season, Forte retired after a decade in the NFL that saw eight seasons with the Chicago Bears to start his career.

As a Bear, Forte impressively started in all 120 regular season games that he was available for. One of the best running backs in team history, his rushing total of 8,602 yards is second only to Walter Payton, and his rushing touchdown total ranks fourth, one spot ahead of the great Gale Sayers. However, Forte separated himself from the other number of great running backs in team history by being one of the best-receiving backs of his generation. His 4,116 yards through the air rank seventh-best in team history, ahead of formidable receivers like Mary Booker and Willie Gault.

His versatility is best exemplified when looking back at the 2013 season. In what would end up being Forte's best season in terms of all-purpose yards (1,933), the team was able to set a new franchise record with 6,109 total yards, the highest since Sweetness led the backfield back in 1985.

Today, Forte remains close to the city that drafted him and currently spends a lot of time working within the community. In 2021, he started a $3 million campaign in the city of Chicago to assist black entrepreneurs with financing. Professionally, the former Bear has also spent time with NBC Chicago alongside former teammates Lance Briggs, Olin Kreutz, and Alex Brown.