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Don't forget Forte

Nov. 6, 2013 11:15 AM
 
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Bears running back Matt Forte burst onto the scene as a rookie in 2008 with 1,238 rushing yards, 477 receiving yards and 12 combined touchdowns. He slowed as a sophomore with 929 rushing yards and 471 receiving. Forte had 4 total scores in 2009. The Tulane product has rebounded in 2010 with 978 rushing yards, including a career-high 4.4 yards per carry average, a career-high 487 receiving yards and 9 combined touchdowns. Forte’s rushing attempts (222) and receptions (43) are on pace to be career-lows, but offensive coordinator Mike Martz has traded quantity for quality. With the Packers playing for their playoff lives against the Bears on Sunday, quarterback Jay Cutler and Mr. Everything Devin Hester have been the most talked about individuals this week. But Forte is having a much different impact than the player that rushed for 29 yards (11 carries) and caught 2 passes for 14 yards in the first matchup in Chicago. Forte ran for 113 yards and a score on 19 carries against the Jets last week – the No. 5 run defense in the NFL. He posted 92 yards on 17 attempts against Minnesota in Week 15. The last two weeks Forte has averaged more 5.3 yards per carry and a minimum of 4.9 yards in four of the Bears last five games. “I’d say he’s having a heck of a year,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “I think they’re doing a very good job running the ball of late, more committed to it. He’s a three-down back. I think just that in itself says a lot about him. He does a very good job with the yards after the hit, very good coming out of the backfield, does a nice job in their protection pickups. “This is clearly probably one of his better years that I can recall since he’s been there.”

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