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Bears GM Ryan Pace: Franchise tag will not affect Alshon Jeffery

Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery will play this season under the franchise tag, but the team doesn't expect it to negatively influence him. Joe Robbins/Getty Images

BOURBONNAIS, Ill. -- Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace is unconcerned about Alshon Jeffery's psyche after the club failed to sign the wide receiver to a long-term deal prior to the July 15 deadline.

Jeffery will play the 2016 season under the franchise tag, worth $14.599 million guaranteed.

“Honestly, I feel really good about where he’s at right now and kind of where we’re at,” Pace said. “I don’t think it’s going to affect him at all.”

The priority for Jeffery is to stay healthy. He missed seven games due to injuries last season but still caught 54 passes for 807 yards and 4 touchdowns.

When Jeffery played all 16 games in 2013 and 2014, he combined to catch 174 passes for 2,554 yards and 17 touchdowns.

Jeffery will no doubt seek top-five wide receiver money again next offseason unless the Bears franchise tag him for a second consecutive year, which is permissible in the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement.

“He’s at a good spot right now,” Pace said. “And you know, those negotiations were friendly the whole time. And I don’t think it’s uncommon when you’re negotiating off the franchise tag to sometimes not come to an agreement. But that doesn’t mean there’s any ill will. So now we understand; we can revisit it after the season. But I’m optimistic. He’s a talented player. He knows he has to stay healthy. And we’ll see going forward.”