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Could Jay Cutler land a new contract before Forte?

Matt Forte's contract war with the Chicago Bears might take an ugly turn.

With two years remaining on the five-year, $50 million extension Jay Cutler signed in 2009, there is speculation the quarterback -- not Forte -- could be next in line for a lucrative new deal with the team. David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune believes the Bears might be gearing up to pay their 29-year-old quarterback before the start of the 2012 regular season.

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Haugh also highlighted Cutler's interesting comments to the Tribune this week. When the quarterback was asked if he misses Forte in the offense, he responded by mentioning his replacement.

"(Michael) Bush is doing a good job out here for us," Cutler said. "We all know what Matt can do for this offense. We all expect to have Matt at some point. When he gets here, he's going to step right in."

The Bears have played hardball with Forte from the start. Some believed that when Phil Emery replaced Jerry Angelo as general manager, Forte would finally land his elusive long-term deal. The Bears appear eternally reluctant to spend lavishly for the services of their 26-year-old back.

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