BOURBONNAIS — Dan LeFevour called backup quarterback Caleb Hanie’s shoulder injury a “great opportunity.” “Now I’ll be able to show what I can do,” LeFevour said before Bears practice Monday.
BOURBONNAIS — Dan LeFevour called backup quarterback Caleb Hanie’s shoulder injury a “great opportunity.”
“Now I’ll be able to show what I can do,” LeFevour said before Bears practice Monday.
The third-string rookie from Central Michigan, who received almost no practice reps before last week, then went out and threw five interceptions in 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills.
“I’m going to make mistakes; I know that,” LeFevour said after practice. “I’m not going to be perfect right away. I’ve just got to keep going at it.
“I’d rather have them tell me to slow down than say let’s go. I want to be aggressive. I want to make smart decisions, but I want to be aggressive.”
Hanie had his right arm in a sling after being injured when two Chargers sacked him in Chicago’s preseason opener Saturday night in San Diego. Hanie, who had an MRI taken Sunday, called the injury a “nonsurgical thing,” but could miss most of the preseason.
“I’ve got to make sure I’m pain free while I’m throwing. That’s the main thing,” Hanie said. “If I’m not pain free and able to throw, then I’m not going to be able to play.”
Rookie safety Major Wright, who was expected to bid for a starting spot, broke his left index finger Saturday night after making seven tackles. He is scheduled to have surgery Tuesday.
“My body heals quick. I’ll be back,” he said.
Backup safety Craig Steltz also left Saturday’s game with a right ankle sprain. Hanie, Wright and Steltz could miss at least two or three weeks.
“They will be out a while,” head coach Lovie Smith said, “but we haven’t ruled any of them out for our first game.”
Even with Steltz and Wright hurt, the Bears have four safeties who started a combined 40 games last year in Chris Harris, Al Afalava, Josh Bullocks and Danieal Manning, who returned to practice today after missing last week. Smith said the Bears wouldn’t try to add a safety but might sign another quarterback if Hanie is out long.
“We’ll see how that plays out,” Smith said. “Only having two healthy guys is a little bit tough. We’ll look at all options. In an ideal world, he’ll have some experience.”
“It’s out of my hands,” Hanie said. “What they do is what they do. It will be best for the team, whatever they do.”
The Bears were already inexperienced behind starter Jay Cutler. Hanie, an undrafted free agent, has thrown seven passes in his previous two NFL seasons, completing three for 11 yards and a 10.7 passer rating. And now, at least temporarily, they are woefully inexperienced, so much so that a radio reporter asked LeFevour if this was his best practice after he threw those five interceptions.
“I’ve got plenty to learn,” LeFevour said.
Hanie doesn’t think he has anything to lose, even if the Bears add an experienced quarterback.
“I’m not worried about losing the No. 2 job,” Hanie said. “I’ve done enough to earn that position. What I have is not a season-ending injury, not even half a season, not even the beginning of the season.”
Matt Trowbridge can be reached at 815-987-1383 or firstname.lastname@example.org.