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Bears Pass Rush Depth Being Tested Already

The Bears injury report was solid on the offensive side with David Montgomery returning for a full practice on Thursday, but edge rusher Robert Quinn remains out with an ankle injury and Khalil Mack continues to be limited with a knee issue

The Bears are treating Khalil Mack's knee injury like a non-issue by saying little about it.

It's more serious for outside linebacker Robert Quinn.

Mack practiced only on a limited basis Thursday for the second straight day due to a knee injury while Quinn missed his second straight practice with an ankle injury. Those were the only two bits of bad Bears injury news as even running back David Montgomery returned at full strength to practice.

Coach Matt Nagy didn't want to divulge much on either injury, but defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano painted a rosy picture of Mack's condition.

"He came back in phenomenal shape," defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano said. "You could tell he did what he was supposed to do outside of this building, like most of them.

"He's had a really good training camp. He's healthy. He feels great. He looks great. He's moving around really well."

Nagy was a little less positive than Pagano on Mack.

"I think he's going to be OK, but I'm not going to get too much into that," Nagy said.

Nagy did say the injury to Quinn's ankle is unrelated to a personal situation that caused him to miss part of training camp.

If the Bears are down one pass rusher or they're slowed, Pagano anticipates they'd try to offset the problem with their reserves or strategically.

"I know that I got to do a better job of making sure that put these guys in position to be successful," Pagano said.

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Pagano pointed to last year's 20-13 Bears win at Soldier Field and recalled how the Lions came in using no-huddle early to take a lead.

"There was some situations there earlier in that game where they went up-tempo and they were at the line of scrimmage and we were scrambling and it looked a little bit chaotic," Pagano said. "That's on me. I’ve got to do a better job of making sure that No. 1, they have a call and they have it on time so that they can see them come out, if they’re tempo or no tempo, we can get line up."

As for the personnel, Pagano said Barkevious Mingo can offer a pass rush alternative.

"He's kind of sneaky good," Pagano said. "With his length and athleticism, his ability to bend, he's got a nice little toolbox of pass-rush deals (I think) and he’s smart."

The Bears just signed former Saints defensive end Mario Edwards, but it's not known how much of the defense he'll have down by the game.

The Bears will need the pass rush going against Matthew Stafford and especially with rookie cornerback Jaylon Johnson making his first start on the right side of the defense. Johnson has come on strong, according to Pagano.

"He's a humble kid, but he's really confident," Pagano said. "He doesn't let things bother him. Guys in this league are going to make plays, we know that. A guy will catch a ball on him, and maybe not, I don't know.

"He's done a great job. He's a very athletic guy and very talented, but he's a confident guy and he's got great ball skills, really good cover skills."

The offensive injury news was far more positive with Montgomery back for a full practice for the first time since Aug. 20. He had practiced Wednesday on a limited basis.

"My foot kind of slipped under me and I didn't get my cleat planted in the ground," Montgomery said. "I thought I tore something actually. Luckily there wasn't a tear."

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