BOCA RATON, Fla. — Receiver Kevin White will be the star attraction when the offseason program begins on April 18.
General manager Ryan Pace said that White is “100 percent healthy” after he missed all of his rookie season after requiring surgery to repair a stress fracture in his left shin.
“Now, it’s just him, that mental confidence to go full speed,” Pace said. “I think he’s there. Like I told you before, he’s got the biggest smile on his face because I think he’s eager to show everybody what he can do. So we’re fired up about that.”
The Bears need White,, the seventh overall pick last year, to be a key playmaker in 2016 after trading tight end Martellus Bennett to the Patriots and not re-signing running back Matt Forte. But they remain mindful of White’s long-term future. They will limit him if needed.
“As we get into the offseason program, we’ll probably have to do that,” Pace said. “I mean, it’s good to have a player that you have to pull back more than you have to push. He’s one of those guys you’ve got to pull back a little bit just because of his attitude.”
Pace spoke positively about recent contract talks with receiver Alshon Jeffery. But plenty of work has to be done before the July 15 deadline.
“Really, [the franchise tag] just bought us more time,” Pace said. “So now we’ve extended that window and we’re continuing to negotiate. And those have been cordial and productive and ongoing. So it’s good.”
Ego getting better
Defensive tackle Ego Ferguson (knee surgery) is expected to be ready by training camp. Ferguson, a second-round pick in 2014, was placed on injured reserve on Oct. 17.
“He’s progressing well,” Pace said. “He’s working very well. Ego is a guy who is going to be competing.”
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