BOCA RATON, Fla. – The New York Jets are banking – literally and figuratively – that William Shakespeare was right with respect to Matt Forte.
“What’s past is prologue,” The Bard’s Antonio declared in Shakespeare’s The Tempest.
Whereas the Bears were uninterested in either a contract extension for Forte before last season or a new one after it, in part because Forte is age 30 and the Bears wanted to go younger, the Jets were not seeing what the Bears were seeing.
“You don’t look at the team,” said Jets coach Todd Bowles on Tuesday at the NFL owners meetings. “You take a look at what the guy’s got left in the tank and you see what he was doing before he got injured and over the past few years. It was our estimation that he’s still a pretty good running back.”
The Jets believed enough in Forte’s past-future combination to invest $8 million guaranteed as part of a three-year contract worth potentially $12 million total.
“You want to get younger,” Bowles acknowledged. “But at the same time, ‘30’ is not an old age when you’re a good football player…. We don’t look at age. He pretty much keeps himself in shape. So we look at him like he was playing four or five years ago."