Chicago Bears News: Get ready, the Bears are getting healthy
By Ryan Heckman
Training camp has been rough for the Chicago Bears, in terms of injuries. The big one, getting plenty of headlines, is that of rookie second-round pick Teven Jenkins who will now miss the majority of the season due to back surgery. However, Jenkins’ injury is only the beginning of the Bears’ woes.
Starting inside linebacker Roquan Smith has been nursing a groin injury for a couple of weeks, which is nothing to mess around with. The Bears have been cautious with Smith, and thankfully have had Alec Ogletree step in and perform at a high level.
Starting right tackle Germain Ifedi has been hurt for a few weeks now with a hip injury. Fellow starting lineman James Daniels has been missing due to a quad injury. Nose tackle Eddie Goldman has had a back injury for a few days and did not play against Buffalo. Meanwhile, another starting inside linebacker, Danny Trevathan, has been out for a little while with a knee injury.
On Monday morning, though, the Bears finally received some good news on the injury front.
Getting four starters back from injury should bode well for the Chicago Bears.
Heading into Saturday’s preseason finale against the Tennessee Titans, Chicago could now opt to play some of these guys who have been out for a little while. It might be a stretch to see Smith out there for anything longer than a series — if at all. But, the rest should see a little action.
Arguably the most important out of all these players returning from injury is Ifedi, who has now become even more valuable to the team after Jenkins’ situation unfolded. The Bears have been ravaged up front over the course of the summer — so much so, that they decided to bring in 39-year-old Jason Peters to compete at left tackle.
With Ifedi at the right tackle spot, Peters will likely have no problem beating out Elijah Wilkinson for the starting left tackle position.
Thinking about a starting offensive line featuring Peters, Cody Whitehair, Sam Mustipher, James Daniels and Ifedi really isn’t all that bad. In fact, it could end up being a pretty solid group, especially if Peters is still capable of playing at a high level.
At this point, the Bears just need reps from their starting offensive line. As time goes on, so long as these five are healthy, the Bears should see stark improvement up front.
As for the defensive side of the ball, it will be Trevathan probably feeling the most pressure. Ogletree’s performance in camp and the preseason has to have put some pressure on. If anything, the Bears now have a key depth piece in the middle of that linebacker core.
Across the board, Monday is a great day for the Chicago Bears. Health has been a major concern, and to be able to get five starters returning is a victory of the highest magnitude. It’s only up from this point on. Here’s to hoping the team stays healthy.