Paea aims for return:
Defensive tackle Stephen Paea suffered an ankle injury on Saturday and has been out since then.
He was out of his walking boot and told the media in Bourbonnais that he would try to return to practice by next week.
Without Paea in practice, Matt Toeaina earns another chance at being the starter heading into the season.
Defensive tackles Ronnie Price, Jordan Miller and Nate Collins will all get extensive time in practice as well in Saturday’s preseason game against Washington.
Moore back on the field:
Another key injury that is noteworthy was D.J. Moore’s thigh contusion. He returned to the practice field on Tuesday.
Backup Kelvin Hayden filled in for Moore at nickelback in Monday’s practice. Hayden provides the Bears with a very solid option off the bench.
Don’t be surprised if the Bears use Hayden in certain packages during the season. The cornerback depth is certainly better this season than in 2011.
Safety Chris Conte continues to impress during training camp. He picked off two passes in practice yesterday.
He has shown consistency in the secondary during practices. He seems to be ready to take that next step in his sophomore season.
Conte isn’t the biggest of safeties, but has solid speed and knows where to be.
Rookie safety Brandon Hardin possesses the size at 6’3″ in a typical free safety. Hardin should expect to see the field at some point this season. It doesn’t hurt to learn behind starters Chris Conte and Major Wright for now.
Saturday will be a big game for both Conte and Hardin, who will be looking to make very few mistakes.
“Five Players To Watch” coming Thursday and “Game Preview” coming Friday.