Chicago Bears defensive tackle Tommie Harris (91) finally drops his helmet to take part in drills at training camp at Olivet Nazarene University. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-US PRESSWIRE
Tommie Harris was back. Yes #91 did individual drills with his defensive line teammates as well as team workouts, which is all good. But the Bears decided to keep the shoulder pads in the equipment room for the first time since their first practice of training camp. But it was still good to see Harris at half speed. The hoopla and headlines over Harris' revealing he had his knee scoped in March didn't sit well with Lovie Smith when asked to clarify his defensive tackles health Tuesday night.
"When we say we're being careful with Tommie, twelve days into practice there is soreness. That's all it is." Soreness from the surgery four months earlier, soreness from his hamstring from coming off that surgery?
"There's been some stuff he has had before, it's no more than that. Nothing to be alarmed about." Smith explained calmly, though clearly not happy about the queries.
Smith did say Harris is expected to play in the preseason opener Saturday in Buffalo despite the artificial surface. "That's not ideal for some of the guys that are coming off of some injuries" Smith said while adding he won't rule anyone out of playing... yet.
TRAINING CAMP DIARY DAY 11:
* the offense clearly ahead of the defense as Jay Cutler zinged a few impressive passes Greg Olsen's way. Capping it off was a one handed touchdown in two minute drill. "I think we're further ahead than everyone else though we were going to be" Olsen smiled as his Pro Bowl quarterback walked by the media throng talking to his tight end and yelled, "next time use two hands!"
* Lovie Smith the unofficial defensive coordinator, must be happy with the offense's thrills, but not his defenses spills. The defensive secondary is still struggling to cover the wide outs, whether its a matter of still getting Jon Hoke's new techniques down or what. Smith will have a better view of his team in Saturday's game at Buffalo.
* the long awaited depth chart was finally released after practice. Josh Beekman is hanging on to his left guard job despite the free agent signing of Frank Omiyale. As expected Devin Hester and Earl Bennett are the starting wide outs along with Tight End Greg Olsen moving ahead of Desmond Clark. Rashied Davis haters might want to let up a bit, the now "most veteran" of receivers is listed second on the depth chart along with Brandon Rideau. While newcomer Devin Aromoshodu and rookie Jauquin Igelsias are third team. Garrett Wolfe sits ahead of Adrian Peterson with the third team running backs. While on defense Nose Tackle is up for grabs b between Anthony Adams, Dusty Dvoracek and Marcus Harrison who lost the job when he showed up out of shape. And with Charles Tillman and Zack Bowman sidelined, Nathan Vasher is joined at corner back by Trumaine McBride and Corey Graham. SAM linebacker (strong side) is up for grabs between Pisa Tinoiasamoa, Nick Roach and Jamar Williams.
* Injury update: TE Fontel Mines thanked fans on his twitter page (FMines89) for their prayers saying "God has a plan for me". Mines tore his ACL in Monday's practice and is a likely candidate for early release with an injury settlement. Jamar Williams still sidelined (shoulder) along with Zack Bowman (hamstring), while Danieal Manning went as full speed as a DB can go without pads, picking off Jay Cutler once and forcing a fumble in other team drills.
* What's this? Devin Hester had a tough time hanging onto the football Tuesday night, but was seen getting his left thumb taped up by trainers. And, as reporters record Jay Cutler's every completion of practice, did they notice the blister on his left hand? Our NBC5 cameraman Matt Byrne caught Cutler seeking attention to his left hand.
Get ready for the most watched blister in Bears history!