LAKE FOREST, Ill.– As expected, the Bears ruled quarterback Justin Fields out for Sunday’s Week 8 game against the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium. Undrafted rookie quarterback Tyson Bagent will make his second career start.
While Bagent will be the guy under center Sunday, Fields continues to be on track in his rehab from the dislocated right thumb he suffered in the second half of the Bears’ Week 6 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.
“It’s good. Yeah, it’s good,” head coach Matt Eberflus said Friday of Fields’ rehab trajectory. “He’s progressing. We’re happy with where he is. Again, he’s working with the trainers still this week, and we’ll give a better update on Monday.”
The Bears have said that Fields will be able to return when the swelling subsides, his grip strength returns, and he can fully grip the football.
Eberflus would not say if Fields has attempted to throw yet but did acknowledge there has been improvement throughout the week.
“He was awesome. He was awesome,” quarterbacks coach Andrew Janocko said Thursday of how Fields has helped Bagent. “Put the TV copy on and you can see those two on the bench and they didn’t miss a thing. Justin was coming up to me, ‘Hey, take a look at this.’ Going up to [offensive coordinator Luke Getsy], ‘Hey, we got this.’ He was an integral part of that win.”
Bagent was solid in his first career NFL start, going 21-for-29 for 162 yards and one touchdown. He avoided the negative plays and let the run game and defense bludgeon the Raiders into submission.
The Bears will hope they can ride a similar plan to victory in Los Angeles before hopefully giving the reins back to Fields for Week 9, should the quarterback’s thumb continue to trend in the right direction.