Bears TE Zach Miller releases first statement since gruesome injury

SHARE Bears TE Zach Miller releases first statement since gruesome injury
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Zach Miller was carted off the field after sustaining an injury during the third quarter against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on October 29, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana. He is expected to be released from the hospital Monday. | Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Bears defensive end Akiem Hicks couldn’t help but tease Zach Miller while visiting the tight end in his New Orleans hospital room late last week.

“He’s a pretty boy, so he always has his hair slicked back and stuff,” Hicks said. “He had his beard looking all rough and grungy. I was like, ‘Man, I’ve never seen you uglier.’

“It was good to see him.”

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More Bears will be able to visit Miller soon. He was discharged from University Medical Center in New Orleans on Monday and returned to the Chicago area, where he’ll need continued medical care.

In his first statement since dislocating his left knee Oct. 29 against the Saints, Miller said he planned to give his three children a hug.

“I understand the challenges ahead, but the amount of love and support I have from all of you is beyond inspiring,” Miller wrote in his statement, which was posted on Twitter. “I have been down before, and I will do whatever it takes to get back up.”

Miller thanked doctors who performed emergency surgery to repair his severed popliteal artery and save his leg from potential amputation.

“Without their teamwork and expertise, I do not know if the outcome would have been as successful,” he wrote.

Miller still needs multiple surgeries to repair torn ligaments. His career is likely over.

Bears coach John Fox spoke with Miller on Monday morning and said Miller and his family were excited.

“They feel really good about where he is,” he said. “All of the medical people have done a terrific job. Now they’ll need to continue that once he gets back to Chicago.”

Tight end Daniel Brown said that “knowing that he’s well enough to come back is really comforting” and that he hopes to visit soon.

“It weighs on you in the back of your mind,” Brown said, “especially when he’s in his condition.”

Hicks, who shares an agent with Miller, spent a half-hour at the hospital last week. He was struck by the resiliency of Miller’s wife, Kristen.

“That’s the real strong person in that situation,” he said. “Because she’s watching her husband go through those things and being his support. Kudos to her.”

Trevathan not at practice

Linebacker Danny Trevathan missed his third consecutive practice. Fox said the Bears weren’t going to give any updates until Wednesday, when the NFL injury report forces them to. Trevathan played all but one snap in the Bears’ loss to the Saints before the bye.

This and that

Center Cody Whitehair (elbow) and guard Kyle Long (finger), who were unable to finish the Saints game, were at practice.

• Tight end Dion Sims missed his second consecutive practice.

Follow me on Twitter @patrickfinley.

Email: pfinley@suntimes.com

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