Cole Kmet joins Bears’ walking wounded
The improving tight end did not practice because of a groin injury. Linebacker Roquan Smith (hamstring), defensive end Akiem Hicks (ankle) and wide receiver Allen Robinson (hamstring) also did not practice.
Tight end Cole Kmet (groin) was added to the Bears’ long list of injured players Wednesday as the team prepared to face the Cardinals on Sunday at Soldier Field.
Kmet joined defensive end Akiem Hicks (ankle), linebacker Roquan Smith (hamstring) and wide receiver Allen Robinson (hamstring) among the key starters who did not practice.
Kmet played the entire game against the Lions, with a career-high eight receptions on 11 targets for 65 yards in the Bears’ 16-14 victory.
Quarterback Justin Fields (broken ribs) was limited in practice. Still, eight players did not practice. The others were defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. (ribs), wide receiver Marquise Goodwin (foot, ribs), running back Damien Williams (calf) and linebacker Sam Kamara (concussion).
Running back Tarik Cohen has yet to return to practice 14 months after he suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament while fielding a punt against the Falcons in Week 3 last season.
General manager Ryan Pace said at the end of last season that the Bears were hopeful to have Cohen “ready for training camp.” But he has been on the physically unable-to-perform list all season.
Coach Matt Nagy has been unclear when asked if there had been a complication with Cohen’s rehab.
“This is a guy who comes in literally every single day and rehabs over and over and over,” Nagy said. “Would we have loved to have him back sooner? Yeah. But that’s not the case, and that’s OK. He’s working his tail off to get better. The only thing we can do is attack it every day and see where it’s at.”
And Nagy would not say he was optimistic that Cohen would play this season, though he did not rule it out.
“If I say, ‘Yeah, I’m optimistic,’ and he doesn’t [return], then it looks bad,” Nagy said. “So all I care about is seeing him in there every day rehabbing and being a part of those team meetings. That’s what he’s done, and that’s what I love about him.”
Jones’ coin-flip gaffe
Linebacker Christian Jones, named a captain against his former Lions teammates last week, threw referee Adrian Hill for a loop during the opening coin toss when he deferred the Bears’ choice until the second half — after the Lions already had deferred after winning the toss. What was up with that?
“You know what — I was kind of chatting with one of my former teammates before the coin toss,” the ever-affable Jones said. “So I heard [the referee], but I didn’t really hear him.”
Fox announcers Joe Buck and Troy Aikman had some fun at his expense, but the good-natured Jones was unfazed by the attention.
“I knew after that, I was going to get some type of backlash from it, but it’s all good,” Jones said with a laugh.
It’s still not the most memorable coin toss in Bears-Lions history. In 2002, Lions coach Marty Mornhinweg took the wind after winning the overtime coin toss at Memorial Stadium in Champaign — only to have the Bears take the kickoff and drive for a game-winning field goal.