LAKE FOREST, Ill. - Perennial Pro Bowl middle linebacker Brian Urlacher has agreed in principle to a long-term contract extension with the Bears. Terms have not been disclosed.
Urlacher's original five-year deal, which he inked after joining the club as the ninth pick in the 2000 draft, was due to expire following the 2004 season.
In 2002, the 6-4, 258-pound superstar led the Bears with a career-high 214 tackles. He became the seventh player in franchise history to earn Pro Bowl nominations in each of their first three NFL seasons. Hall of Famers Dick Butkus and Gale Sayers were the last to do it in 1965-67.
In 2001, Urlacher finished fifth in NFL MVP voting-the highest of any defensive player-and was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year by Football Digest. In 2000, he was tabbed NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year after leading the Bears with 165 tackles and 8 sacks.