Bears left guard Kyle Long (75) is helped off the field by team personnel in the fourth quarter of the Bears’ 24-10 victory over the Jets on Sunday at Soldier Field. | Nam Y. Huh

Kyle Long week-to-week with foot injury; Bears getting ‘next man up’

SHARE Kyle Long week-to-week with foot injury; Bears getting ‘next man up’
SHARE Kyle Long week-to-week with foot injury; Bears getting ‘next man up’

Guard Kyle Long’s season remained in doubt Wednesday, as the Bears looked to “the next man up” while they continue to figure out the extent of the foot injury Long suffered in the Bears’ 24-10 victory Sunday against the Jets.

Long officially is “in that week-to-week thing,” according to coach Matt Nagy, who indicated Long might have issues with the tendons in his right foot. Long has been in the locker room at Halas Hall on a scooter with a walking boot on his injured foot. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported Tuesday that Long would be out six to eight weeks — anything but the shortest end of that timetable would make a return this season problematic.

“We don’t know the complete extent to it yet,” Nagy said. “We’re trying to just get through the point of figuring out throughout this week and the following weeks how long it’s going to be.

“He’s frustrated. You could tell he was in pain. It wasn’t anything to do with his other injury [to his right ankle in 2016]. So we have to get him going rehab-wise, mentally-wise and get the next man up.”

With Long out for the game this Sunday against the Bills at New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York, the Bears have two main options they like: starting Bryan Witzmann at right guard and letting Eric Kush and rookie James Daniels continue their rotation at left guard or moving Kush or Daniels to right guard.


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“We’re working through that [decision],” Nagy said. “We have good players [in] James, Kush and Witzmann. We feel confident in all three.”

Kush started the first six games and alternated with Daniels against the Buccaneers, Dolphins and Patriots before missing the Jets game with a stinger. Daniels started and played every down.

“[Kush is] a fighter; he’s very competitive,” Nagy said. “He’s a kid who’s played Division II football. He’s battled a lot of odds, beat a lot of odds. Whenever he gets challenged or put in a position to do well, he’s done a great job of that so far. He had that injury, and now he’ll be back, and we need him back.”

The 6-8, 315-pound Witzmann started 14 games, including a playoff game, at left guard for the Chiefs and Nagy last season because of injuries to starters Mitch Morse and Zach Fulton. The Chiefs waived him before Week  1. The Bears signed Witzmann on Oct. 8.

“He did well [with the Chiefs last season],” Nagy said. “It’s comforting to know — and it’s the same with Kush — that two guys that I’m familiar with know our system, know our protections, know our run game. So they have to be themselves when they come in here. They can’t try to be Kyle, so whoever it is, wherever it is, play ball and cut it loose.”

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