David Butler/USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Bears will hold back Leonard Floyd early in the season

Due to a "choppy" off-season filled with illness and injury, the Chicago Bears will only be using first-round OLB Leonard Floyd in a part-time role.

Since the start of training camp, Chicago Bears first-round OLB Leonard Floyd has dealt it illness, a shoulder and a hamstring injury.

As a result, he's missed a number of practices, as well as the third preseason game.

"Overall his camp was kind of choppy," defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said. "First, early on, he had an illness that kept him out a couple days. Then he came back. Then he dinged his shoulder a little bit. It kept him out a couple days. Then he tweaked the hamstring, which kept him out. So I think the best word has been choppy and inconsistent more from an availability standpoint to where he could have a large chunk of good, learning practices in a week playing in a preseason game."

As such, Floyd's development has been stunted.

"Because of those things I mentioned in training camp, I don’t think he’s in the greatest condition right now," Fangio said. "And I think for a young guy like himself, playing 60 to 70 plays in an NFL game,  he’s going to find it vastly different than the 80 plays he might have played in college. He’s up against men now and he’s found that out quickly. Some ways it’s not a bad way to break in. When we had Aldon Smith in his rookie year he only played about 50-some percent of the time. He was in and out too."

Due to a rough off-seaon, it does not appear as if the Bears plan on using Floyd in a full-time role this season, especially not early in the campaign. Expect Floyd to work mainly on passing downs as he builds conditioning level.

Despite the setbacks, Fangio said he's happy with Floyd and what he can eventually add to the team.

"Well he’s athletic. He can run. I think he’s got good instincts," said Fangio. "He just has to learn what to do and how to do it more consistently.

"I"m disappointed he got sick and missed a few days of practice. I'm disappointed he dinged his shoulder. I'm disappointed he tweaked a hamstring. I'm disappointed that happened but I'm not mad at him. He didn't do it on purpose. But it has retarded his development a little bit."


Bear Report Top Stories