The tag guarantees Fuller a $12.971 million salary for the 2018 season and gives the Bears until July 16 to work out a long-term contract. The exclusive franchise tag makes it so the player can only negotiate with his team, and the non-exclusive franchise tag makes it so if a player signs with another team, his original team gets two first-round picks.
Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Bears reportedly will place the transition tag on Fuller.
Given Fuller's performance this year, the Bears chose to apply the transition tag, a designation that gives the Bears the opportunity to match any contract offer that Fuller agrees to. The team surely has the capability to match any offer thrown Fuller's way when free agency starts next week. Given the flexibility that the transition tag allows, it's easy to see why Pace opted for it instead of the franchise tag to keep Fuller around. With defensive coordinator Vic Fangio still in the fold, keeping the former 14th overall pick will allow him to get creative else where given Fuller's ability to shutdown top-end receivers with little help. He played all 16 games this season, recording two interceptions, 22 passes defended and 89 total tackles. The 2014 first-round draft pick missed the entire 2016 season following a routine knee scope, which caused the team to decline his fifth-year option. He came back in 2017 and had another solid season, rehabbing his value.
Bears general manager Ryan Pace expressed interest in retaining Fuller at last week's National Football League scouting combine.
Fuller, 26, thrived as a rookie, tallying four interceptions and 10 passes defensed as a 14-game starter.