NFC Notes: Bears, Packers, David Bakhtiari


Bears WR N’Keal Harry is happy to be with Chicago after spending his first few years in the NFL with New England. Harry called the transition a much needed fresh start.

It really is a much-needed fresh start for me,” Harry said, via 670 The Score. “This is a reset. A much-needed reset.”

Bears GM Ryan Poles added that Harry has a very good skillset and plays with a chip on his shoulder.

He has a really good skill set, great physical traits and I think he has something to prove, for sure,” Poles said.


  •’s Bill Huber notes Packers OT Yosh Nijman is the frontrunner to start at left tackle for as long as David Bakhtiari is out. He adds the Packers have more of an issue at right tackle with Elgton Jenkins also recovering from a torn ACL. Cole Van Lanen worked there during the spring but Green Bay could also give G Royce Newman or third-round OL Sean Rhyan a shot to win the job. 
  • There’s also a stiff competition on the defensive line for the two other starting spots, with Huber listing Jarran Reed, first-round rookie Devonte Wyatt, Dean Lowry and Tedarrell Slaton as the competitors.  
  • Huber points out the Packers third outside linebacker plays about 600 snaps even in a rotational role, which could be a lot for fifth-round OLB Kingsley Enagbare. He thinks this is a spot Green Bay could look to add to at some point in camp. 
  • Packers WR Sammy Watkins took ownership of his hamstring injury and explained that he worked out on his own shortly after a four-hour flight, but wasn’t hydrated: “Something I shouldn’t have been doing.” (Ryan Wood)
  • Packers HC Matt LaFleur said the improvement in QB Jordan Love has been the operation in the huddle, at the line of scrimmage and in general: “He’s got a great approach. Jordan has been through it for a couple years now.” (Tom Silverstein)

David Bakhtiari

Packers OT David Bakhtiari isn’t concerned about his knee and feels he’s way ahead of where he was this time last year.

Concern level: low,” Bakhtiari said, via Sports Illustrated. “I really like where I’m at, especially compared to where I was just overall last year.

Bakhtiari isn’t placing a deadline on his return and said that when he feels good to go, he’ll return to practice.

Everyone loves timelines. When I’m ready, I’ll be out there,” he said. “What I can say is I do feel really good. I really like – I feel normal. My knee feels normal, and that’s the biggest plus. Now it’s just getting that normal feeling again when I play football. So, that’s what it is: the load, stress, strength, but we’re not really in an ACL issue. That’s actually been a long time ago that we put that chapter to bed. It’s just there’s other issues.

Bakhtiari feels more mobility in his knee and said that he’s planning on feeling even better than he did last year.

I would say I really enjoy how my knee functions, operates and moves,” he said. “It’s not like I would say how I was dealing with it last year. It’s hard to describe. I think only people who have gone through it maybe will have an idea, especially when it’s not cooperating with you. It was just stuff, it almost felt like blockage. It was really weird.

Packers QB Aaron Rodgers expressed confidence in Bakhtiari being able to return fully healthy and said that he’s focused on being there for him mentally as he continues to go through the rehab process.

I think this year’s going to be really special for him both on and off the field, and we look forward to him getting back whenever that time is,” Rodgers said. “I’m not concerned about him not coming back, I’m really not. I’m more concerned about the mental side, as a friend, just loving on him and taking care of him, spending time with him and making sure that first and foremost is him taking care of himself, and when he gets back, he’ll be back. We’d obviously love him to be back as soon as possible, but this is a knee on a 315-pound man that would love to play, four, five, six more years. We’ll be excited for whenever he comes back, but right now I’m just worried about the friend and taking care of him the best I can.

Bakhtiari said this has been the most challenging part of his career and the adversity has tested him mentally.

I remember when I was playing sometimes, it sucks I have to say that, but I remember thinking like, ‘This is getting pretty easy’ and it was fun,” he said. “And I kind of (thought), ‘Let’s make it a little bit challenging.’ By God, I got that answer. This is definitely the most challenging thing I’ve had to go through. I recently talked with my wife and thought about how I started my career. Not even just here, but just putting on pads. No one really thought I would be where I was, so it’s kind of cool to feel that again. You can say or not say, but I know those questions are out there. This is cool because it’s like I get to relive that same story again. I made the choice back then. I can make the choice again.

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