BBAO: Matt Forte skipping OTAs

May, 24, 2012
5/24/12
7:40
AM ET
We're Black and Blue All Over:

It was almost an afterthought amid discussion of quarterback Jay Cutler's new weapons, the weight loss of receiver Johnny Knox and the configuration of the offensive line. But we might as well acknowledge it: Newcomer Michael Bush was the Chicago Bears' first-team tailback during Wednesday's organized team activity as starter Matt Forte stays away from the facility in a contract dispute.

Forte has yet to sign his $7.7 million franchise tag while pushing for a long-term extension. If there is an end in sight to those negotiations, it hasn't been reported publicly. While no one thinks Forte will elect to miss regular-season games, it isn't clear if he'll report for any part of the Bears' offseason program or training camp.

Bush, via Jeff Dickerson of ESPNChicago.com: "Nobody has ever brought up Forte's name or wished he was here or anything to make me feel uncomfortable. But me being me, [I think] Forte needs to come on out so we can get it going. But I know he's got to take care of himself and his family as well."

To be continued.

Now for our morning spin around the division:

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