Alshon Jeffery franchise tag remains ‘an option’ for Bears

If the Bears are not able to agree to a long-term contract with receiver Alshon Jeffery, using the franchise tag remains an option, according to general manager Ryan Pace.

Pace met with the media at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis on Wednesday and fielded a variety of questions. The topic of Jeffery was the first one brought up by reporters.

“We’re actively and aggressively negotiating right now,” Pace said. “[The franchise tag] is an option. We have until Tuesday to make that decision.”

Pace, however, would not confirm whether the Bears would indeed use the tag if an agreement on a long-term deal could not be reached, and only reiterated that “it’s an option.”

Rumors spread last season that Jeffery was unhappy in Chicago after his good friend and former teammate Brandon Marshall was traded to the New York Jets. But Pace doesn’t think there’s any reason Jeffery wouldn’t want to be back.

“We’re the team that drafted him, he loves the city of Chicago, he’s comfortable in the offense, and I sense that he wants to be here.”

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