Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs concedes that he is probably playing in his last season with the team, saying he expects to be elsewhere next season when his contract expires, the Chicago Tribune's Dan Wiederer reports.
Briggs, a seven-time Pro Bowler, has spent the last 12 seasons in Chicago after being selected by the team in the third round of the 2003 draft. Briggs is making $4.75 million in base salary this season and understands the reality of the business, especially if the team decides to part ways with him after the end of the season.
"It’s not like I’m going to magically show up after this year and they’re going to open the gates up for it. I understand it,” Briggs said to the Chicago Tribune. “I understand this is probably my last year as a Chicago Bear, and this could be the last time I play the Packers.
"But for me, I really do enjoy my teammates. And it's been unfortunate to watch from the sidelines because I want to see them find success."
Briggs has not played since Oct. 5, a 31-24 loss to the Carolina Panthers, because of a rib injury. Briggs was back on the practice field on Wednesday, taking first-team reps, and expects to play in Sunday night’s NFC North matchup against Green Bay.
Briggs, who turns 34 next week, was asked if this might be his last NFL season.
“I don't know,” Briggs said. “Somebody's got to want you first and then you go from there. But right now, my focus is the Packers."
This season, Briggs has 22 total tackles and one interception for Chicago (3-5), which has lost four of its last five games.
- Scooby Axson