Brian Urlacher and the Chicago Bears agreed to part ways after failing to agree to a mutually beneficial contract. It has the face of the Bears franchise for the past 13 years facing free agency for the first time in his career and looking for a new team. But when Urlacher joined ESPN Chicago, he had a message for the fans.
“Well, I had a great time here,” Urlacher said, via Sports Radio Interviews. “Thirteen years is a long time to play in one place in any sport, especially football. … But the fans have always been great here, especially to me. Whether we were good or bad, they still came out and froze their butts off in the winter. … Much appreciation to the fans. I’ll always hold our fans to a higher standard than other fans.”
And while Bears fans are upset that Urlacher is leaving, he isn’t.
“I’m not upset. I was never upset,” Urlacher said. “I understand the business side of football and it was just time to move on for me. That’s all there was to it. I was never upset. Disappointed? Yes. Did I want to be a Bear? One hundred percent. But it just didn’t work out.”
He was however, shocked by how quickly the news came out.
“It was amazing how fast they released it. They got off the phone with my agent at I don’t know what time it was, and 30 seconds later they already had the email on Twitter. So they already has the statement prepared, obviously. … They knew what was going to happen. They were ready for it, obviously. … I would’ve appreciated the call.”
On a final note, he explained how the offseason negotiations went.
“Honestly, it wasn’t a shock to me that it went like this. I said this before, I told my agent at the beginning of the offseason that I don’t have a good feeling about the Bears. There was no dialogue going back and forth; they didn’t even talk to my agents. I specifically told my agents not to call the Bears because I wanted to see if they really wanted me back or not. They didn’t contact us until the combine. They met and asked us to send a proposal over. … Just never could get a deal worked out. We had another proposal sent back after they sent theirs over. … The Bears were stuck on their offer; that’s what they had in mind and they weren’t moving. So it just didn’t work out, and I wasn’t surprised one bit.”