BOURBONNAIS, Ill. – Kevin White told a couple of local news outlets on Friday that if it were up to him, he would be out on the field playing the sport he was drafted to play.
But it wasn’t and isn’t up to the rookie wide receiver, who will undergo surgery to repair a stress fracture in his left shin. When exactly it first appeared isn’t clear at this point – one story is that it was there at the NFL Scouting Combine in March (where he ran a 4.35 “40”), others that it was early, or late, in offseason OTA’s.
Earlier or later, which doesn’t really matter now, the situation turned dark last week when White ran lightly on Monday without issues, then had some discomfort when he tried again on Tuesday.
The first and hardest thing for White, who missed one game in two seasons at West Virginia with a shoulder injury, was to admit that to the organization.
“Probably the most difficult thing I’ve had to do in a little while, kinda just throwing in the towel kinda-thing,” said White. "I just have to be honest, because if not, then I’ll hurt myself, and it wouldn’t be sure for my future, if that’s what it led to.”
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The decision was not especially easy for the Bears, who could have continued to wait for healing to occur naturally. But the reality is that surgery might still be required even after additional waiting.
The offense will open the season without him and after that, “I know it’s going to be a little while [coming back],” White said. “If I can come back and am able to play a little bit in the season, we’ll do it. If I’m feeling ok.
“But just following through. If they want me out there, then I’ll try my best to get out there. I want to come back as soon as possible. But listening to the guys from understands. If it’s this season, then great. If it’s next season then I’ll just have to wait.”