According to the Chicago Sun-Times, the Bears have agreed to terms with RB Chester Taylor on a four-year, $12.5 million contract. The move will be detrimental to the fantasy stock of Matt Forte in 2010.
After emerging as a top fantasy player during his rookie season, Forte was a major disappointment in 2009. He saw a huge drop in scrimmage yards and total touchdowns as the result of a decreased role in the offense with Jay Cutler under center.
In fact, he saw 58 fewer carries last season than he did as a rookie.
With Taylor in the mix, the Bears will move to a backfield committee approach. Despite entering the season at the age of 30, the veteran could even be allowed a chance to start ahead of Forte.
Remember, he is a former 1,200-yard rusher who’s caught 89 passes over the last two seasons. That makes Taylor a nice fit for the offense of coordinator Mike Martz.
He also hasn’t had much wear and tear on his body over the last three seasons, averaging just 117 carries in Minnesota behind fantasy superstar Adrian Peterson. In a best-case scenario, Taylor will be a viable flex starter with added value in PPR leagues.
Whatever the scenario, it’s going to be hard to trust Forte as more than a No. 2 fantasy back. Owners in keeper leagues with alternative options should also be looking to cut ties.