GLENDALE, Ariz. — Defensive end Akiem Hicks and cornerback Prince Amukamara — who enjoyed perhaps the two best training camps on the defense — joined the Bears’ growing list of inactive players.
Hicks has been battling an Achilles tendon injury, and Amukamara, who’s from the Phoenix area, strained his hamstring in the Bears’ last training-camp practice Monday.
Inside linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski, recovering from a concussion, and cornerback Johnthan Banks, who hurt his leg in practice Wednesday, were also inactive.
The Bears already announced 11 players who did not travel with the team, highlighted by running back Jordan Howard (corneal abrasion), guard Kyle Long (ankle), inside linebacker Danny Trevathan (patellar tendon) and wide receiver Markus Wheaton (finger surgery).
Others who won’t play are cornerback Bryce Callahan (ankle sprain), linebackers Jonathan Anderson (high ankle sprain) and Alex Scearce, wide receiver Josh Bellamy (ankle) and defensive linemen Mitch Unrein (concussion) and Kapron Lewis-Moore.
The Bears are hoping a change of scenery can change the career arc of second-round bust Roberto Aguayo.
In a pregame radio interview, Bears general manager Ryan Pace explained the team’s rationale behind signing the former Florida State star after the Buccaneers waived him Aug. 12. They had good grades on him before the 2016 draft.
“You’ve seen kickers through their careers kinda get themselves out of some lulls,” Pace said. “And the main point is, we look around this roster, and the one thing we’ve talked and stressed is, we want to create competitive situations at every position.”
He praised Connor Barth for being perfect in practice after the Bears added Aguayo. Barth made a 42-yard field goal in the first quarter Saturday against the Cardinals. Aguayo badly missed a 49-yarder in the fourth quarter.
“Everybody responds to competition,” Pace said. “It makes everybody better, and it’s good to see.”
Cohen stars — again
With Howard and Jeremy Langford out, rookie Tarik Cohen looked very much the starter.
Cohen was the best player on the field to start the game, running for 65 yards on his first six carries. He had nine rushes for 72 yards in the first quarter and 77 yards on 11 carries in the first half.
Howard suffered his eye injury during the walkthrough Friday morning and did not fly with the team. Langford’s ankle sprain kept him out of his second consecutive game.
The Cardinals lined up for a 63-yard Phil Dawson field goal as the first half was expiring. After a timeout, the Bears put Deonte Thompson in the back of the end zone.
The kick fell short, and Thompson caught it on the fly nine yards into the end zone.
He danced and found a wall down the left sideline and ran the ball in for a 109-yard touchdown.
This and that
Center Hroniss Grasu started his first game of any kind since tearing an anterior cruciate ligament. The Bears moved regular center Cody Whitehair to left guard in place of Long.
◆ Wide receiver Kevin White got his first touch of the preseason on Mike Glennon’s first pass: a loss of three yards on a screen pass.
White was not targeted in the opener.
◆ After getting shut out against the Broncos, wide receiver Cam Meredith had an eight-yard reception on the Bears’ second drive.