Henry Melton said there has been "chatter" between his agent and the Chicago Bears, but nothing to indicate a deal is close, the Chicago Tribune reported Thursday. The sides have until Monday to come to a long-term contract agreement or the defensive tackle will play this season under his franchise tag.
"I can only control what I can control, and that's my performance on the field,'' Melton said. "It's kind of like when you have strong feelings for a place -- you want to stay there long term. Of course you want to get something done, but it's pretty much out of my hands.''
Melton, for my money, is the most entertaining Bears defensive player to watch -- with Peanut Tillman a close second. Melton's combination of size, strength and nimbleness makes him one of the most versatile defensive tackles in the NFL -- the man was a freaking running back in college.
Melton told the Tribune he was looking for a five-year contract, but he declined to give a dollar target. The Bears have a history of last-minute deals (Matt Forte last year), so a new contract still might get done. If not, Melton will play out his franchise tag and might be a candidate for it again next year.
Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.