It’s early — really, really early — in Chicago Bears training camp, but the second day of practices didn’t begin the way head coach Matt Eberflus or general manager Ryan Poles could’ve hoped.
The offensive line, in particular, had a rough outing for reasons beyond on-field play. Second-year offensive tackle Teven Jenkins missed practice for still unknown reasons. Starting center Lucas Patrick suffered an injury during practice and was forced to the locker room. No update has been provided on the type, or extent, of his injury.
Jenkins is a concerning development that could quickly turn into a non-story if the Chicago Bears share what the issue is. They haven’t yet, which has speculation running amuck. It’s possible Jenkins is under the weather. It’s also possible that he’s injured. Remember: last year this time, Jenkins missed all of training camp because of a back injury that required surgery.
Jenkins lost ground in the competition for a starting job in 2022 during offseason minicamps, and if he has any setbacks early in training camp, his once promising future will be on shaky ground.
Patrick, meanwhile, is a much bigger problem. His veteran presence in the middle of the Chicago Bears’ offensive line is critically important to any success the unit will have in 2022. The good news is Patrick is an experienced player who doesn’t need an entire training camp to get ready for the season. He also has experience in Luke Getsy’s offense, making his learning curve not nearly as steep as other Bears offensive linemen. If he’s forced to miss a few practices, or even a few weeks, no big deal. If he’s out longer than that, Sam Mustipher is the most likely candidate to replace him in the starting lineup.