nsucurrent.com April 26, 2018

Bears match Packers offer sheet, keep Kyle Fuller in Chicago

18 March 2018, 01:39 | Lowell Little

Kyle Fuller Reportedly Signs Packers Offer Sheet; Bears Have 5 Days to Match

Packers sign Kyle Fuller to offer sheet; Bears must decide whether to match

The Green Bay Packers took a shot at solving their cornerback conundrum when they signed Chicago Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller to an offer sheet - an offer sheet that the Bears reportedly matched immediately.

With Fuller not under contract for the 2018 season, the Bears chose to use the transition tag on him, which gives them the right of first refusal on any offer sheet he signs but unlike the more common franchise tag, does not yield any compensation for the team if it elects to let him walk.

The Bears will have to match terms dictated by the rival Packers if they want to keep cornerback Kyle Fuller. There is no point for the Packers to rear load the contract to affect the Bears cap when Trubisky becomes a free agent because that money won't be guaranteed so the Bears could just restructure with Fuller with more guaranteed dollars if he's worth keeping, or let him walk once the deal runs out of guaranteed money if he's not. Had they used the franchise tag and lost Fuller, they would have received two first-round picks. That includes two picks he made while starting all 16 games in 2017.

The Bears have five days to match the Packers' offer sheet, which is exactly what Chicago has planned to do, Rapoport added.

Fuller, a 2014 first-round draft pick, missed the entire 2016 season following what was supposed to be a routine knee scope, causing the team to decline his fifth-year option. But even if they don't, the Packers worked the system in their favor. The transition tag had the Bears already on the hook for $13 million (an average of the top 10 salaries at the position), as opposed to $2 million more for the franchise.

Fuller had his best season past year with the Bears. The structure of the contract is what will be interesting. That would net Fuller a 5 year, $65 million contract with $32 million guaranteed.

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