Key Chicago Bears defensive back Kelvin Hayden, counted on to serve as the Bears nickel back and be a core special teams player, will be lost for the season after his injured hamstring was diagnosed as torn. Surgery is imminent with a expected recovery time of between four-eight months.
Hayden, who signed with the Bears prior to the 2012 season as a free agent, was injured during last Saturday’s practice at Soldier Field. His experience as a former starting corner will be missed, and it further depletes an area where the Bears could ill afford to lose key players. Hayden’s career has been star-crossed in recent years, as injuries mounted and new coaching staffs chose to go in different directions.
In Hayden’s place steps former sixth-round (2012, Nevada) draft choice Isaiah Frey. Frey has been one of the most reliable Bears while in Bourbonnais, but he must replicate that success once the bullets start flying for real. “I am not really thinking about that right now,” he said. “I am just doing what the coaches ask me to do.A good friend of mine, a good teammate, injured himself. I can’t even explain how much (Hayden) helps. He helps me continuously and he is going to continue to help me. Asked what his key to success might be, Frey offered, “I’ve just got to be reliable. I just have to do what they ask me, whether it’s special teams or playing corner or playing nickel. I have to go out there and do my job.”
Bears head coach Marc Trestman was more pragmatic in his assessment of Frey. “ I think Isaiah has got to come out and continue to do what he’s doing, make plays,” coach Marc Trestman said. “When he gets the opportunity to be in the right place and do the right thing, he’s doing that. He certainly is in the competition right now to be that guy. But we’ve got a long way to go. It’s early
in training camp. It will take care of itself as it moves along. He is certainly exciting us the way he has played consistently over the first two weeks of this thing.”
Paw Prints: Trestman said Bears starters would play limited snaps Friday in Carolina. However, Trestman says QB Jay Cutler will play. Jay will play, he’ll play very, very limited,” Trestman said. “How limited? I don’t know. It could be three plays, it could be one play, it could be eight plays. I’m not trying to be smart, we’ll see how the flow of the game goes. If we go three-and-out, we’ll decide if he goes back in for another three, he may not. It’s really just a general feel on what we want to get accomplished that time….OT Jermon Bushrod’s status For Friday is uncertain. He’s been working out over the last week since returning from an early camp injury (calf), but coaches may not want to risk further injury….WR Earl Bennett will miss the contest with a concussion. It’s his second concussion since last December….The Bears travel Thursday, play at Carolina on Friday, and after a day off Saturday, are back at Bourbonnais for the last few days of camp before returning to Halas Hall in Lake Forest.