It’s official. The Chicago Bears announced their claim of kicker Roberto Aguayo off waivers from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but it came at a price as the team placed wide receiver Rueben Randle on injured reserve.
The Bears signed Randle to a one-year deal in the offseason as the team bulked up its receiving corps after allowing Alshon Jeffery walk away in free agency. He was targeted twice, catching both passes thrown to him and gaining 18 yards. However, he’ll be out of action because of a hamstring injury. With Randle out of action, it leaves Kendall Wright, Deonte Thompson, Victor Cruz, Markus Wheaton, Alton Howard, Tanner Gentry, Josh Bellamy, Titus Davis, and Daniel Braverman to battle for time behind starters Cameron Meredith and Kevin White.
Randle’s status isn’t the only update to the injury report:
- Markus Wheaton’s practice reps had been on the rise, even after undergoing an emergency appendectomy. But the free agent receiver left practice on a cart on Sunday, and we later learnned he broke his finger during a 7-on-7 drill. Injuries have been nagging Wheaton the last few seasons. He is coming off a year in which he played just three games with the Pittsburgh Steelers because a shoulder injury that required surgical repair. If you’ll recall, Wheaton signed a two-year deal with the Bears this offseason.
- Brad Biggs of the Tribune tweets some news that brings mixed feelings, as left guard Kyle Long told reporters he might not play in the preseason. The three-time Pro Bowl offensive lineman battled a shoulder injury and missed eight games with an ankle injury that was surgically repaired in the offseason. Chicago has been steadily bringing back Long into the mix, but he missed Thursday’s preseason opener. While it would be wonderful to see Long on the field and the interior of the Bears’ offensive line in tact, healthy, and on the field, it’s more important that Long be ready for the regular season.
- A trio of defensive linemen find themselves on the mend. Robert Zeglinski tweets defensive end Akiem Hicks was held out of practice Sunday because of a sore Achilles. Hicks started in all 16 games last season, setting career bests in sacks (7) and tackles (36) in the process. It’s been a busy offseason for the free-agent-to-be. He dumped his former agent in June and signed with Drew Rosenhaus in July. For what it’s worth, Hicks has said he would be willing to re-sign with the Bears in a heartbeat, and seems fond of the idea of finishing his career in Chicago. The Bears had been reportedly talking about an extension as training camp started, and we’ve looked at what it might in an extension take to keep him in Chicago.
- Defensive end Jaye Howard has missed the last two practices because of a hip injury, tweets Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune. Head coach John Fox told the assembled media Howard had an injection in his hip that caused him to miss time. Meanwhile, Campbell notes Howard had offseason surgery in his hip to remove bone spurs.
- Another defensive lineman was missing in on Sunday’s action, as Roy Robertson-Harris left practice early because of a concussion.
- One of the more notable absences in practice was second-string quarterback Mark Sanchez, who was in coach mode on the sidelines and on the field during Sunday’s session. As it turns out, Sanchez was nursing a bruised ankle injury he suffered last week … but it shouldn’t keep him out of Saturday’s preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals.