Running backs Matt Forte of the Bears and Ray Rice of the Ravens cashed in on lucrative long-term contracts just ahead of the 4 p.m. deadline for signing players designated with the franchise tag.
Forte agreed on a four-year, $32 million deal, per the Chicago Sun-Times, while Rice inked a five-year, $40 million contract just minutes before the deadline, according to the Baltimore Sun.
Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome praised Rice team owner Steve Bisciotti for showing long-term commitments to the team.
“This is another example of Steve Bisciotti’s commitment to the team and to our fans to retain our core players,” Newsome stated. “Ray has been an integral part of us earning the playoffs in each of his four seasons, and that includes helping us get to two AFC Championship games. His production on the field speaks for itself, and his leadership in the locker room is outstanding."