Bears guard Kyle Long might not feel quite 100 percent, but he’s in a better spot than he was at the end of the season.
Long has battled injuries for the last two seasons. And this offseason, he underwent three surgeries. But Long is -confident he’s in a good place heading into Bears training camp, which begins July 21.
“[This offseason has] been challenging,” Long, who was promoting Applebee’s and its All You Can Riblets and Chicken Tenders special as a spokesperson, told the Sun-Times in a phone interview. “Like everything in the NFL, it’s been hard. It’s one of those things that you learn a lot about yourself and you know having that understanding and having some perspective is great.
“But feeling where I am and what I’m getting myself into, I know how to pace myself. I’m excited to get back out there and help my team in any way I can. And the only way to do that is to be on the field.”
His health situation aside, Long believes the team is set to have success, -especially under the leadership of new coach Matt Nagy.
Long has been nothing short of impressed with Nagy’s knowledge and passion for the game.
“Matt Nagy is really fun to play for,” Long said. “He’s a guy that has played quarterback and coached, so he’s worn a few different hats in the league. He’s someone who understands how to get through to a young team, and that’s what we have in Chicago. He understands that, and he can really get the attention of the defense and the offense and bring us all together.”
Long also praised second-year quarterback Mitch Trubisky’s development this offseason and believes he’s better prepared to succeed.
“My little boy is becoming a man,” Long said. “They’ve taken the training wheels off of Mitch’s little bike. So he’s going to be able to do some things creatively and get to showcase his skills a little bit more in an open range. We’re excited to see him.”