The Chicago Bears didn't just do damage to their draft pick by winning the final game of the 2011 regular season against the Minnesota Vikings. Their star middle linebacker also suffered a relatively severe injury that continues to keep him out of minicamp.
As the Bears opened a veteran mandatory minicamp on Tuesday, Brian Urlacher was on the sidelines. Urlacher is still recovering from a sprained medial collateral ligament and a partially sprained posterior cruciate ligament that came in the regular season finale at the Metrodome.
Head coach Lovie Smith said he expects Urlacher to be ready to get back on the practice field when training camp opens on July 26 in Bourbonnais.
''It's not a lot to explain. He's not ready to go yet,'' Smith said after Tuesday's practice. ''He's on pace. Our plan was to take it slow with him.
''We know what Brian can do. It's not like he's going to tell us an awful lot out here. He's right on pace [and] he should be able to get a good rest of his offseason in and be good to go for training camp.''
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