LAKE FOREST, Illinois — Chicago Bears Offensive Gear Bitches Jenkins returned to training camp on Saturday after missing seven consecutive practices with an undisclosed injury.
Jenkins, who is in a start-up period, only participated in individual exercises. The sophomore lineman would not reveal any details about his injury, including whether he was injured during the team’s first practice session on July 27, whether he still suffers from back problems after undergoing off-season surgery last season and where he is currently van is recovering, but estimated he should. be 100% completely healthy in “a few days”.
“It feels really good and I’m not feeling any discomfort right now, so it’s really good,” Jenkins said after Saturday’s practice. “If I had to give myself a percent, probably around 90% and it’s about getting my body back into the feeling of football and getting back to that 100% of ‘this is football’ and getting ready to to go.”
Jenkins said he has been in the training room for the past nine days and that his extended absence was for “improving my health.”
His absence was especially noticeable at Halas Hall amid second-round trade rumors. Earlier this week, Jenkins responded to a fan on Twitter who was concerned about his whereabouts for “not believing everything you read” in light of reports of mutual dissatisfaction between the player and the franchise.
“One thing, mainly, that I clashed with coaches,” Jenkins said. “That wasn’t true at all, and I just wanted to tell everyone that you don’t have to believe everything someone says. It’s just the way it is.”
For the first week and a half of training, coach Matt Eberflus refused to discuss details of Jenkins’ absence and classified the tackle as “day to day.” Offensive Coordinator Luke Getsy said on Friday that Jenkins has been present at team meetings and “all in.”
Both Getsy and Eberflus claim that Jenkins is vying for a starting spot on the offensive line and have relayed that message to the lineman.
“Really, the same as everyone else: ‘Go out and join in. Everything is open. Dive in,'” said Eberflus. “Like we said, he’s been great in meetings. He’s been very attentive. He’s been paying attention. He’s been back at the walk-throughs, watching the plays and understanding his role and the plays. So he’s been good .”
Jenkins was drafted 39th overall in 2021 by former Bears general manager Ryan Pace. After undergoing back surgery for his rookie season, Jenkins was limited to 157 snaps on left tackle last season.
Jenkins said he believes in the Bears organization and expects to be with the team during the regular season. “For myself, I’m a loyal type,” Jenkins said. “The Chicago Bears, they called me up, so I’ll stay with the Chicago Bears until when it is.”
Jenkins was ousted on left tackle by rookie fifth rounder Braxton Jones during OTAs and was moved to right tackle with the second team. On the first day of training camp, Jenkins was given reps as a swing tackle and said he was willing to explore a move to guard.
“I’m willing to play where they want me,” Jenkins said. “I want to be here in Chicago, so I play where they need me to play.”
Jenkins’ return came on a day when Chicago finished its ninth training camp on three of the top four wide receivers.
N’Keal Harry sustained a left ankle/foot injury during the first game of team practice and had to be helped off the field by teammates and coaches.
“I just saw him come down,” Eberflus said. “I’ve seen the piece and I don’t really know much about it. Of course we’re going to do the evaluation and once I have that we can send it back to you. And if it’s a longer situation, let’s you know what it is If it’s day to day, we’ll say that too.”
Byron Pringle and rookie Velus Jones Jr. were also non-participants on Saturday. Pringle, one of the Bears’ top signings, has a quad injury, according to Eberflus, and has no timetable for a return, although the team is optimistic that his injury will not deter him for the regular season.
“No, I don’t think so. I don’t think so,” said Eberflus. “It’s longer than daily, so that’s all I can say, but no real time frame to return. But we’re hopeful it’s a good situation for us.”
Jones Jr. is “day to day,” according to Eberflus, who expressed concern about the team’s wide receiver depth after lining up for the No. 2 and No. 3 wide receiver roles without three players.
“Yeah, you always worry about that,” Eberflus said. “You know, at camp, when you have a 90-man squad and guys go down with a soft tissue or whatever it is, you put work pressure on other guys. And those other guys have the opportunity. They have more reps, so you have to take that into account. And we were. We take that into account.”