Bears put on the pads, but play it safeContinue reading.
Kyle Long cleared to practice after viral infection
BOURBONNAIS — Fans attending the Bears’ Family Fest this Saturday at Soldier Field could have a special treat: a healthy Kyle Long in full pads taking part in practice.
The second-year guard has been sidelined by a viral infection since the start of training camp. But the Bears said Wednesday that he’s been cleared of his illness and will begin conditioning.
“He’s got to get his legs back underneath him,” coach Marc Trestman said. “I think by Saturday night you’ll see him in pads. We’ll work him into individual [drills] in pads on Saturday night. That would be the hope and we’ll take it from there.
“If we feel he’s got his feet underneath him and his pads are where they should be, we’ll see where Saturday night goes, and with Sunday off, we’ll be ready to go. That would be the plan, but we’re going to take one day at a time. We always do here. But to be forthright with you, that’s what we hope and we think we can get that done.”
Long briefly spoke with the media while jogging off the practice fields.
“I’m really excited,” Long said. “Yes, it’s killing me. I’m really excited to get back to work.”
Eben Britton, Brian de la Puente and Michael Ola have each played in place of Long with the Bears’ first-team offense. Britton suffered a left hamstring injury during individual drills on Wednesday and is considered day-to-day.
Trestman said Long has been doing “minimal things” but that his conditioning will “accelerate” during the rest of the week.
“[Long] hasn’t put pads on for quite some time and hasn’t played football for quite some time either even through the [organized team activities] and now the time away of the first five days of practices,” Trestman said. “We’ve been here six or seven days of learning and doing those kinds of things and he’s been away some of that time. I think that all goes into the mix and we’re going to do the right thing. We’ll do what the trainers and doctors tell us to do. He’ll be in meetings, he’ll get back on his feet and we’ll get him going.”