When it comes to the defensive side of the ball, the injury report has been brutal for the Chicago Bears the last two years.
“He’s practiced all week. He’s been in the mix. He’s been around the football, been in the right places. So it’s good to see he’s worked through these couple of little things,” coach Marc Trestman said today. “As far as we see, he hasn’t missed a rep all week.”
Fuller has been wearing a plastic brace on his hand during practice, yet Trestman doesn’t know if he’ll wear it during the game.
“I don’t think the brace is going to be a problem. I really don’t,” Trestman said. “We don’t even know at this point how it’s going to be handled. We’ll see where he is in the next couple of days.”
Even if his hand is wrapped up, Trestman doesn’t believe it will affect Fuller’s performance as a defensive back.
“Sometimes it’s more problematic for the lineman because he’s got to use his hands on every play,” said Trestman. “So it’s the constant pounding on each and every play. That doesn’t necessarily happen from a standpoint of a defensive back. Certainly he’s got to wrap up and make tackles but he doesn’t have the direct collision all the time that a lineman has.”
Linebackers Jon Bostic (back) and Lance Briggs (ribs) were limited all week and are doubtful for the game. Either Khaseem Greene or Christian Jones will start for Briggs, who is still dealing with soreness in his ribs.
“That’s where it’s been, just the soreness. But he’s certainly getting some work out there and kind of back in the mix a little bit more, which is exciting to see,” Trestman said. “As the trainers say, he’s starting to work his way in. He got some work today. We know he’s doubtful but we’ll see where he is over the next couple of days.”
Right tackle Jordan Mills, who is still dealing with soreness in his foot due to offseason surgery, is questionable.
“Well, certainly it’s a problem right now,” Trestman said. “So we’ll have to see where that is over the course of the next couple of days. We’ll see where Jordan is. If he can’t go, then Mike [Michael Ola] will be in his place.”
Ola has already started two games apiece at both left guard and left tackle this year. If he starts on Sunday for Mills, it will be the third different position he’s started at in the first eight weeks. It’s that type of versatility that has made Ola so valuable to the Bears in 2014.
“We’re grateful to have him here, and Michael’s grateful to be here. We certainly know that,” said Trestman. “He’s just handled himself as if he’s done it. That’s really the best way to describe him is that he carries himself like he’s been doing this a long time; the way he engages his teammates, the way he prepares, the way he handles himself in meetings. It’s obvious that his journey has put him in a place where he is very comfortable in this position in terms of the job he’s got to do.”
Jeremy Stoltz is Publisher of BearReport.com and a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. He is in his fourth season covering the Chicago Bears full time. Follow Bear Report on Twitter.