When Mel Tucker was hired as defensive coordinator, he made it clear that he would be keeping the Bears defense pretty much the same as it had been under Lovie Smith. If a top-10 defense wasn’t broke, why fix it?
But the defense has not been able to be truly “the same” this preseason, with Pro Bowl defensive tackle Henry Melton playing only briefly at Carolina, then not since then because of a concussion that has kept him out of every other preseason game.
While Earl Bennett remains a long shot for the Cincinnati game with his concussion, Melton now is on track to be ready for the Bengals, getting a little closer to practicing and likely getting there next week.
“He did more (Wednesday),” head coach Marc Trestman said. “He’s out here working. He ran yesterday, he ran a little bit more today and we’re going to continually progress him. He’ll work out before the game tomorrow. He’ll be working out every day through Monday, and we’ll see where he is then.”
Linebacker D.J Williams is more problematic for the Bears, doing more work on mending his calf injury but still not practicing full and arguably not able to do the kind of conditioning required for game-speed. Yet.
“We’ll see how it looks on Monday when we come out to practice for the first time,” Trestman said. “They’ve got almost four days off now for most of them. So we’re optimistic. But we’ll see where he is on Monday.”