With playoff hopes lost, Bears put LB Danny Trevathan on injured reserve
Danny Trevathan might have played his final down with the team — his contract expires at the end of the season.
Inside linebacker Danny Trevathan’s left elbow bent the wrong way Nov. 10 against the Lions, but he never went on injured reserve, holding out hope he could return late this season for a relevant game.
After being eliminated from playoff contention, the Bears put Trevathan on IR on Wednesday. They promoted cornerback Michael Joseph, an Oswego High School alum, from the practice squad to take his place.
“Talking through everything with where he’s at, with where we’re at, we just felt like right now is the right time,” coach Matt Nagy said.
There’s no indication — at least yet — that the same applies to two other veterans. Defensive lineman Akiem Hicks, who returned from a similarly dislocated elbow Sunday, practiced in full Wednesday. So did cornerback Prince Amukamara, whose hamstring injury forced a rotation with second-year player Kevin Toliver against the Packers. Eventually, Amukamara — who could be cut at the end of the year — was benched altogether.
Trevathan’s contract expires at the end of the season. The cap-conscious Bears could consider a short-term deal for him — he’s one of the most respected players in their locker room — though he could probably get more money elsewhere.
Two Bears didn’t practice: wide receiver Taylor Gabriel (concussion) and right tackle Bobby Massie (ankle).
Patterson on Pro Bowl
There aren’t many players of Cordarrelle Patterson’s caliber playing special teams, and even fewer double as a returner and gunner. Patterson took that challenge this season with the Bears and did it well enough to make the Pro Bowl.
“It’s not a surprise to me because I know what I can do,” he said. “That’s confidence I’ve had since I was growing up. Anytime my number is called, I can make a play.”
The Bears took him at his word this season, and special-teams coordinator Chris Tabor turned him loose as a gunner and kick returner. He is second in the NFL at 29.6 yards per return and had a 102-yard touchdown against the Saints. He also has 151 total yards offensively.
Patterson was a first-round pick as a wide receiver but has always been uncommonly enthusiastic about pulling double duty on special teams.
“I just love football, man,” he said. “This [stuff] I do day in and day out, I come to work with a smile on my face. Every day I just have fun, and whenever I’m on the field, I’m gonna make a play. That’s something I’ve been doing my whole life.”
Nagy and Chiefs coach Andy Reid praised Mike Kafka, a former Chiefs quality-control coach who was promoted to quarterbacks coach when Nagy took the Bears job.
A St. Rita alum, Kafka threw for 3,430 yards at Northwestern in 2009 before bouncing around with seven NFL teams.
Kafka was among those to work with rookie Patrick Mahomes in 2017.
“That’s where having a guy like Mike Kafka, who has played in the system in Philadelphia and who was drafted with [Reid] in Philadelphia, [is great],” Nagy said. “You’re able to take a guy who is growing as a coach and have him help out — behind the scenes — a guy like Patrick.”