Bears healthy heading into season opener


LAKE FOREST, Ill. (670 The Score) -- The Bears could begin the regular season with a clean bill of health.

On Monday afternoon, the Bears took to the practice field with center Lucas Patrick (hand), cornerback Jaylon Johnson (undisclosed), receiver Byron Pringle (quad) and receiver Velus Jones Jr. (undisclosed) each present after they had recently missed time.

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The team is still assessing the health and status for each returning player, coach Matt Eberflus said.

"A lot of guys are back," Eberflus said.

The Bears are required to issue their first injury report of the regular season Wednesday.

Patrick suffered his right hand injury during the first practice of training camp in late July. Until Monday, he hadn't practiced since. The Bears are still assessing whether Patrick would return to his initial position of center or move to right guard, Eberflus said, which would allow Sam Mustipher to continue as the team’s starting center.

Johnson had been sidelined for the last week while dealing with general soreness, the Bears said. He didn't practice last week.

Pringle's return came ahead of the regular season, as initially hoped by the Bears. He had missed all of training camp and the preseason. Pringle posted 42 receptions for 568 yards and five touchdowns with the Chiefs last season.

The rookie Jones had been absent from practice the past week, but the Bears believed he was never in danger of missing the opener.

The Bears kick off the regular season Sunday when they host the 49ers at Soldier Field.

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.

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