Bears injury report: Updates on Khalil Herbert, Tremaine Edmunds originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
The biggest Bears news of the day was head coach Matt Eberfus announcing Justin Fields will not start against the Panthers on Thursday Night Football because he’s not medically cleared to play, then leaving the door open a crack for Fields to return based on how he progresses Thursday a.m.
“There’s a little time left but again, we’ll declare him out when he’s out,” Eberflus said. “Right now we’re still listing him as doubtful.”
Reading between the lines of Eberflus’ full press conference, it seems unlikely that Fields plays against the Panthers. The head coach was less opaque about other starters’ statuses. Tremaine Edmunds (knee), Nate Davis (ankle), Khari Blasingame (concussion) are all out. Backup cornerback Terell Smith is also out with mononucleosis.
With Edmunds out, Jack Sanborn will draw a second start at middle linebacker. Sanborn was a standout defensive player in Week 9’s loss to the Saints. Teven Jenkins will fill in for Davis. Like Sanborn, Jenkins has made big positive impacts, especially in run blocking, in his stint back at right guard. The Bears tried several players as a lead blocker when Blasingame went down, including tight end Robert Tonyan. It will be interesting to see how the Bears adjust their offense with several days to prepare for life without a fullback.
Finally, running back Khalil Herbert, wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown and cornerback Josh Blackwell all practiced in full, yet remain on the injured reserve. Each man is considered questionable to play, but each man would need to be put back on the active roster before they can suit up.