Bears’ HC Matt Nagy clarified that he will name the starting quarterback as early as next week after telling the media that it would not happen until the weekly preparations against the Lions in Week 1.
“What I meant, to keep it real simple, was that there was not going to be a quarterback named this week that we’re in right now,” Nagy said, via ChicagoBears.com. “So I apologize if I made that gray. But there will be no waiting until the middle of the week or the end of the week for that to happen. That wouldn’t be fair to our team and it wouldn’t be fair to the quarterbacks.”
Nagy added that the announcement would likely come on Monday or Wednesday.
“Honestly, we don’t know that,” Nagy said. “But it would be in that timeframe in there somewhere. You will know by the time most teams usually know. We’re not hiding anything. We’re going through, for us, this whole process and we don’t even know that yet to be quite honest. So we’re talking through those situations and what’s best and how to go about it. So we’re just really honestly not there yet.”
Away from the quarterback controversy, Nagy said he feels that second-round pick CB Jaylon Johnson is prepared for his first career game in the NFL.
“I feel like he’s ready,” Nagy said. “You can see the confidence that he has. You have to have a short-term memory in this league. He’s got extreme confidence. And it’s not cocky. It’s confidence. I like that about him. He’s got a ways to go. He hasn’t played an NFL game. We’ll see. But in practice so far, I like where he’s at.”
The Bears are also embracing the next man up mentality since losing RB David Montgomery to a groin injury, and running backs Tarik Cohen, Ryan Nall, Cordarrelle Patterson and undrafted rookies Artavis Pierce and Napoleon Maxwell are all battling for attention in Montgomery’s absence.
“We like where we’re at,” Nagy said. “Obviously, we like it more when David is in there. But these guys I think have really taken on their role and what we’re trying to do in that room. We wanted to make sure that for different reasons last year, we needed to improve our run game. They knew that. The offensive line, coach [Juan] Castillo, [assistant offensive line coach] Donny Raiola, coach [Charles] London, they’re really focused on working together. Hopefully, we can get that thing going this year.”
- The Athletic’s Chris Burke notes the Lions have an interesting dilemma with WR Marvin Jones, who is in the last year of his deal but is also 30 and behind WR Kenny Golladay in the pecking order for an extension.
- Burke says RB Kerryon Johnson has looked good despite the knee brace and will be a solid contributor as long as he stays healthy.
- He adds Lions S Tracy Walker has been outstanding even though he’s still running primarily with the second team.
- Burke was also impressed by TE T.J. Hockenson, DT Danny Shelton, QB Matthew Stafford, WR Jamal Agnew and fifth-round WR Quintez Cephus.
- Lions HC Matt Patricia said second-round RB D’Andre Swift didn’t suffer any setbacks and would continue to be a limited participant in practice. (Benjamin Raven)
- Andrew Krammer of the Star Tribune notes DE Danielle Hunter has been sidelined for two weeks with an undisclosed injury and did not have a helmet or pads for a thirteenth straight practice.
- Matthew Coller reports if the Vikings had cut OT Riley Reiff, OT Rashod Hill was more likely to take over the right tackle job than OT Olisaemeka Udoh.
- Vikings HC Mike Zimmer echoed that confidence in Hill: “We have a lot of confidence in Rashod. … He’s played well when he’s been in there.” (Chris Tomasson)
- Udoh was also impressing Zimmer: “He has good feet, he’s a smart guy. Very athletic. He’s done well.” (Tomasson)
- Now that the Vikings officially processed the trade for DE Yannick Ngakoue, Zimmer could comment more specifically: “He’s a guy who’s had a lot of statistics as far as forced fumbles, sacks. Another pass rusher to add to our group. We’re excited to have him.” (Krammer)
- The Vikings were one of the teams that expressed interest in DB Logan Ryan at one point this offseason, according to Ryan’s father. Ryan had multi-year offers on the table but wanted to sign a one-year deal and picked the Giants this week for $7.5 million. (James Kratch/Zack Rosenblatt)