In the time that passed between seeing Justin Fields’ hand in a brace and the injury report dropping, my heart found residence in my throat.
But in some respects, I can breathe easier knowing that Fields (right thumb) was a full participant in Wednesday’s practice. Meanwhile, fellow quarterback Andy Dalton was practicing, too, albeit with limitations. I think it should be noted that a full participation at practice suggests Fields wasn’t dealing with any limitations. And that Dalton’s status going from not practicing to doing so in a limited capacity suggests that Fields is closer to starting than Dalton is at this point. At least, that’s the conclusion I come to when Head Coach Matt Nagy hints strongly at the healthier player being QB1 on Sunday against the Lions.
As for the rest of the injury report:
— Chicago Bears (@BearsPR) September 29, 2021
Star pass-rusher Khalil Mack did not practice because of a foot injury. If you’ll recall, Mack left last Sunday’s loss to the Browns and spent some time in the blue medical tent dealing with the injury. Mack would return later and ultimately play on 51 percent of the team’s defensive snaps. We’ll continue to monitor to see if this is one of those situations where Mack isn’t practicing, only to be active on game day. Or it could be one in which Mack might be out for an undetermined amount of time.
Joining Mack among players not practicing while dealing with injuries are safety Tashaun Gipson Sr. (hamstring) and linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe (hamstring). Iyiegbuniwe’s hamstring injury took him out of the Week 3 loss early. But unlike Mack, did not return. Gipson missed out on the game altogether, as the hamstring issue that began last week as keeping him as a limited practice participant hasn’t allowed him to give it a go in the last three practices.
Jimmy Graham (weekly non-injury/veteran’s rest day) and Jesse James (personal) were also not practicing on Wednesday. If you want a positive to take from this, it means there were more reps for Cole Kmet. The more practice reps the better, if you ask me.
In addition to Dalton practicing with limitations on Wednesday, Eddie Goldman (knee) and Darnell Mooney (groin) also have that designation. The groin issue that had Mooney on the injury report last week didn’t seem to slow him down, as he was in on all but one offensive snap in Week 3. As for Goldman, he was practicing with limitations twice last week until a DNP came up last Friday. I think we know better than to put the cart before the horse here. In other words, I won’t get too excited over seeing that Goldman was practicing in some capacity. Instead, I’ll wait until he practices in full before I share some optimism in that regard.
We’ll update tomorrow when the second injury report comes our way. Until then, the beat goes on.