LAKE FOREST, Ill.—Brian Urlacher said that Matt Forte didn’t do a very good job of missing tacklers, but the running back sure did a good job of avoiding the comments made by the former Pro Bowl middle linebacker.
Urlacher made candid and critical remarks regarding his struggling team on Sunday to Mike Silver of Yahoo! Sports, and some of his comments centered on Forte, the second-year running back who has hit a major sophomore slump as the team ranks last in the league in rushing.
“You know why that doesn't work?’’ Urlacher said of a busted screen pass to Forte. “We don't make anyone (expletive) miss. I guess I just don't realize what great tacklers these (opposing defenders) are. They're amazing.”
After Wednesday’s practice at Halas Hall, Forte said he wasn’t aware of what Urlacher said, words that have created a buzz around the team the last few years.
“Urlacher has his own opinion. If I couldn't make anybody miss, I probably wouldn't be playing pro football,’’ Forte said.
“We've got to do a lot of things,” he said. “We've got to make people miss, we've got to block people, we've got to do a lot of things. It's not one particular thing that is hampering the offense. We're hurting ourselves most of the time.”
Forte has rushed for only 543 yards after setting a franchise rookie record in 2008 with 1,238. He is averaging only 3.3 yards per carry, and the Bears have flat out abandoned the run at times. They have had 12 or less carries as a team in three games, and 20 or less in six.
“It's frustrating,” Forte said. “But you can't harp on being frustrated because it carries over into other games. Then, you'll be focused on being frustrated instead of being out there and trying to do things right on the field.
“When you don't get rushing opportunities as a running back, you have to try to impact somewhere else.”
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