Matt Eberflus: Starters will play vs. Seahawks — but not much
The Bears’ head coach is being cautious with a short week after Saturday’s preseason opener against the Chiefs. Some starters will play 6-10 snaps; others might hit 20. “We’re not going to put stress on their bodies,” Eberflus said.
Bears coach Matt Eberflus said starters will play against the Seahawks on Thursday night at Lumen Field, but probably just a cameo, with the Bears coming off a short week following the preseason opener Saturday against the Chiefs.
“It’s [on an] individual basis,” Eberflus said “And it’s a little bit shorter this time, because it’s a short week, so we’re not going to put stress on their bodies.
Eberflus said some starters will play 6-10 snaps. Others might get 20. But it won’t be the “dress rehearsal” that usually precedes the preseason finale.
With only three preseason games because of the 17th regular-season game, the previous preseason routine has been altered. Eberflus said starters might play more in the final preseason game against the Browns on Aug. 27 — normally a game for reserves.
Quarterback Justin Fields and the starting offensive line played 18 snaps over three series against the Chiefs. Some defensive starters played 16 snaps. Others played 25.
Rookie cornerback Kyler Gordon will play Thursday night after missing the opener with an undisclosed injury. Eberflus wouldn’t say if he would start, but he’s slated to be the starter in Week 1, so it figures that he would.
Gordon, the Bears’ second-round draft pick (39th overall) from Washington, went to high school in Everett, Wash., north of Seattle.
“We’re excited to see a lot of players that we didn’t get a chance to see in the first game,” Eberflus said. “It’s kind of a homecoming for him, so he’s really excited abut it. He’s going to get his plays in. We’re excited to see where he is.”
Tight end Cole Kmet, who also did not play against the Chiefs, is hopeful he’ll play against the Seahawks. Eberflus said, “If guys can play we’re going to play them” and Kmet said he’s ready to play, so …
Kramer on IR
Rookie center Doug Kramer from Hinsdale Central and Illinois, was put on injured reserve with a lower leg injury. Kramer was getting second-team reps in training camp — and getting positive reviews — with starting center Lucas Patrick out since July 28 with a broken thumb.
The Bears waived three players with an injury designation: safety Michael Joseph, cornerback Jayson Stanley and linebacker Javin White.
Whitehair bullish on Jones
Rookie left tackle Braxton Jones continues to get rave reviews from coaches and teammates.
“Braxton’s going to be a good player,” veteran guard Cody Whitehair said. “The way he studies. The way he understands stuff. He’s very athletic. He’s got great length. He uses his hands well. I really like where Braxton’s at now. He’s only going to continue to grow. I’m really excited to see that growth.
It remains to be seen if Jones can sustain his early success and establish himself as a starter if he wins the job. But based on early reviews, he’s not just good for a fifth-round draft pick, he’s just good.
“Our [personnel] department did a really good job of finding him,” Whitehair said. “They knew what they were looking for. I think they found a good one in him.”