Slot cornerback Bryce Callahan broke a bone in his left foot Sunday night, according to a memorabilia company that canceled his autograph-signing appearance Tuesday night. His injury is a blow to a Bears defense that has been as healthy as it has been dominant.
Callahan, 27, left in the second quarter of the Bears’ 15-6 victory against the Rams. Coach Matt Nagy said Monday that the team was putting the foot through further tests and that he’d know more before practice Wednesday.
It’s unclear if the injury will send Callahan to injured reserve. With the Bears all but assured a playoff berth — they need a win or a Vikings loss to clinch the NFC North — they could keep Callahan on the active roster and hope for healing.
He has been an integral part of a defense that leads the NFL with 25 interceptions. The next-closest team, the Dolphins, has 19. No one else has more than 15.
Even after missing most of the Rams game, Callahan had played 77.4 percent of the Bears’ defensive snaps. He has two sacks and two interceptions and has been a blitzing weapon for defensive coordinator Vic Fangio. Rams coach Sean McVay, whose team plays almost every snap with three receivers, called Callahan an “excellent nickel” last week.
The Bears figure to turn to Sherrick McManis on passing downs. The Northwestern alum played 56 percent of the Bears’ defensive snaps against the Rams, leading them in tackles. McManis, who turns 31 next week, has one sack and one interception. He has played 101 defensive snaps after totaling only 49 the last two years combined.
On defense, only one regular has missed significant time — Khalil Mack sat out two games and was hampered in two more by an ankle injury.
Callahan, who signed a $1.9 million restricted-free-agent tender with the Bears in April, will be a free agent at the end of the season.
Elite Icons, which had scheduled an autograph-signing event in Lombard, wrote on its social-media pages Tuesday afternoon that Callahan had broken his foot.