Bears anticipate Damien Williams will miss Sunday’s game

One day after running back Damien Williams tested positive for the coronavirus, the Bears said on Friday that receivers coach Mike Furrey would miss Sunday’s game against the Packers because of COVID-19 protocols.

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Chicago Bears v Los Angeles Rams

Damien Williams runs against the Rams.

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A day after running back Damien Williams tested positive for the coronavirus, the Bears said receivers coach Mike Furrey would miss the game against the Packers because of COVID-19 protocols.

Like all coaches, Furrey is vaccinated. Because close-contact quarantining is no longer required of vaccinated players and staff, the only reason for Furrey to miss the game Sunday would be a positive coronavirus test.

While it’s unclear if Williams is vaccinated, coach Matt Nagy was clear that the Bears anticipate he’ll miss the Packers game.

Nagy said he didn’t believe the Bears were in the midst of an outbreak at Halas Hall.

“We all go into this just kind of knowing and understanding that sometimes this could happen,” he said. “Every team, every person, every player. But as it comes up, you deal with it, and just like you went through it last year, it’s kind of that next-man-up mentality.”

Guard James Daniels said he wasn’t on higher alert — “There’s a state mandate to wear a mask indoors, so I wear a mask indoors,” he said — while cornerback Kindle Vildor said Williams being put on the reserve/COVID-19 list was a reminder that the coronavirus still lurks.

“Just continue to wear your mask and things like that, even if you are vaccinated,” he said.

Assistant receivers coach Chris Jackson will take over Furrey’s duties on Sunday at Soldier Field.

With Williams out, the Bears will turn to rookie Khalil Herbert at running back. Ryan Nall is the only backup on the 53-man roster, though the Bears likely will promote Artavis Pierce from the practice squad Saturday.

Herbert will shoulder the load against Green Bay.

“But at the same time,” Nagy said, “you’ve got to make sure you have depth because it is a physical game.”

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