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Bears OLB Leonard Floyd underwent surgery on broken hand

August 21, 2018

Bears OLB Leonard Floyd had surgery on his fractured right hand Sunday, but he is not being ruled out for the regular-season opener against the Packers in Green Bay, according to coach Matt Nagy.

“That surgery went well,” Nagy said. “We’re staying optimistic for Green Bay.”

It’s doubtful that the fracture will be completely healed by Sept. 9, but Floyd could still play.

“I don’t think it’s going to be healed,” Nagy said. “I think he’s going to have to end up playing through it. It might require something in regards to having a cast or a club-type deal and there’s been evidence of guys that have had that and been productive, and that’s what we’re hoping right now.”

TE Adam Shaheen’s sprained right ankle was being further evaluated while Nagy spoke to the media Monday afternoon at Halas Hall, and he also has not been ruled out for Week One.

Floyd, who has missed 10 games in the first two seasons with a variety of injuries since he was the Bears’ first-round draft pick in 2016, was working his way back from last year’s sprained knee that required surgery in November. He had participated in every training camp practice; and in the preseason, he flashed the pass-rush prowess that made him the ninth overall pick two years ago. He was injured in Saturday’s preseason victory in Denver when he was cut by Broncos OL Garett Bolles and put his hand down to brace his fall. The fracture is between the index and middle fingers on his right hand.

Floyd had seven sacks in 12 games during his rookie season but dipped to 4.5 last year, when he played in just 10 games.

“It’s frustrating,” Nagy said. “He’s staying positive; he’s in good spirits. The surgery went as good as it could go. So now it’s just a matter of having the right mindset and recovering from the surgery and staying in it mentally.”

Bears GM Ryan Pace parted ways this offseason with veterans Willie Young, Lamarr Houston and Pernell McPhee. To help replace them, the Bears signed only ex-49er Aaron Lynch, who hasn’t practiced since the first day of camp because of a hamstring injury, and drafted sixth-rounder Kylie Fitts.

Chicago ranked sixth in the NFL in sack percentage last season, but in parting with those three vets, in addition to Mitch Unrein and Christian Jones, the Bears lost nearly 35 percent of their sack production.

With Floyd sidelined, the Bears’ top healthy edge defenders are Sam Acho, Fitts and Isaiah Irving.

Shaheen also had put together an impressive camp before he was injured after catching a five-yard pass on the first series of Saturday night’s game. He had four catches for 58 yards in the preseason. The second-round pick in 2017 from Ashland caught 12 passes for 127 yards as a rookie and led the Bears with three TD catches.

Without Shaheen, the Bears will rely more on backups Daniel Brown and Ben Braunecker behind starters Dion Sims and Trey Burton. Bears tight ends have been extremely productive in the preseason. They combined for 11 receptions and 174 yards in the second game against the Bengals, and they added seven catches for 73 yards against the Broncos.

Brown is second on the Bears in the preseason with 101 receiving yards on six catches. Against the Broncos, Burton opened the Bears’ scoring with a seven-yard TD reception from Mitch Trubisky, and Braunecker caught what proved to be the winning touchdown on a 12-yard toss from No. 2 QB Chase Daniel.

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