The Bears still don’t know how long they might have to get by without guard Kyle Long. He coach Matt Nagy told the media Wednesday that Long might have damage to a tendon in his right foot.
Count Mitch Trubisky among Long’s many disappointed teammates. “It’s tough to hear news like that; one of our brothers of our family going down, and we’re going to support him all the way and back him up.”
The injury occurred late last Sunday’s game against the Jets. Nagy says the injury has nothing to do with Long’s previous ankle injury. The Bears could end up placing Long on injured reserve but they’re holding off on that for now. In the meantime Long will still be very involved with the team off the field.
“He’s still in the meetings, he’s still around; his big personality is still around, which ya’ love. We’re all there for him, he’s there for us,” says Nagy.
“We’ve got a lot of depth at the o-line,” says Trubisky. We feel really comfortable with where we’re at and who’s stepping in there.”
Trubisky emphasized the Bears’ next-man-up mentality. That’s a mindset that’s helped keep linemen like rookie James Daniels prepared to play at any given time.
“All the offensive linemen, we practice like we’re going to be starters, so that’s why I think the transition is going good,” says Daniels who made his first start at left guard last week in place of Eric Kush.
“We just got to help the guys out,” says center Cody Whitehair. “James did a good job coming in last week, and then when Brian had to come in, he did a nice job too. I think we’ll work well together and we’ll be fine.”
With guys stepping up to fill in for Long Nagy says what they can’t do is try to be exactly like Long.
“They have to be themselves when they come in here. They can’t try to be Kyle as we go, and whoever it is, wherever it is, play ball and cut it loose.”