Bears

Knox to undergo surgery

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Knox to undergo surgery

The hit was frightening and now Johnny Knox will undergo surgery Monday in order to stabilize a vertebra in his lower back, according to Bears officials.

The prognosis is good for career and quality of life, team spokesmen said. But it is difficult to see an injury of this magnitude not having a permanent impact on a player who faces constant threat of injury even in the normal course of a very violent sport.

The Bears wide receiver was injured while trying to recover his fumble after a first-quarter reception. He was bent backwards by a blow from Seattle Seahawks defensive end Anthony Hargrove and the game was stopped for a long period while Knox was attended to on the ground, placed on a stretcher and taken off the field slowly on a cart with his head immobilized between two pads.

It has been a difficult year for Bears wideouts, with this latest problem the worst. The Knox injury, coupled with the release of Sam Hurd after drug charges and his arrest last week, leaves the Bears with Earl Bennett, Devin Hester, Dane Sanzenbacher and Roy Williams.

Bennett missed five full games and most of a sixth after suffering an unspecified serious chest injury against New Orleans. Hester has not missed any games but has battled ankle injuries that have limited him from full-time duties at both receiver and returner.

Report: NFL, NFLPA close to signing updated CBA with COVID-19 conditions

Report: NFL, NFLPA close to signing updated CBA with COVID-19 conditions

The NFL could be one step closer to returning, soon. According to Ian Rapoport, the NFL and NFLPA are close to signing their updated collective bargaining agreement for playing in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The two sides agreed to a new CBA back in March but came back to the table to revise after the global pandemic hit the United States hard.

This news comes after the NFLPA player representatives voted 29-3 in favor of the changes on Friday.

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The new deal allows for 16-man practice squads, no preseason games for 2020, and high-risk and voluntary opt-outs for players. According to Tom Pelissero, high-risk players who opt out will receive a $350,000 stipend. Voluntary opt-outs for non-high-risk players will receive a $150,000 salary advance. Contracts will toll in each case, meaning it will be treated as a regular year of service time.

According to Ian Rapoport, training camp will now include a 20-day ramp-up period with no more than 14 padded practices.

In addition, Rapoport reports that rosters will need to be trimmed down to 80 players by Aug. 16, and no more than 80 people will be allowed in team buildings at a time.

"The NFL clubs and the NFL Players Association approved an agreement that broadly resolves all outstanding issues relating to the opening of training camps and start of the 2020 season," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. "Training camps will begin as scheduled.

"We have worked collaboratively to develop a comprehensive set of protocols designed to minimize risk for fans, players, and club and league personnel. These plans have been guided by the medical directors of the NFL and the NFLPA and have been reviewed and endorsed by independent medical and public health experts, including the CDC, and many state and local public health officials.

“The season will undoubtedly present new and additional challenges, but we are committed to playing a safe and complete 2020 season, culminating with the Super Bowl."


RELATED: Success of Bears' coronavirus 'bubble' rests on player responsibility

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COVID-19 concerns cause Bears' Jordan Lucas to opt-out of 2020 NFL season

COVID-19 concerns cause Bears' Jordan Lucas to opt-out of 2020 NFL season

The Bears announced a handful of moves on Monday morning, with the most notable being that safety Jordan Lucas has decided to opt-out of the 2020 NFL season. 

Lucas is the second player on the roster to opt-out, along with defensive tackle Eddie Goldman. The safety signed as a free agent back in March, having previously spent time mostly as a special teams guy for the Dolphins and Chiefs. 

Additionally, the team announced that defensive tackle John Jenkins and tight end Eric Saubert have both been taken off the reserve/COVID-19 list. Jenkins will be tasked with filling much of the role that Goldman's absence creates. 

Lastly, the team waived offensive lineman Dino Boyd. An undrafted free agent who originally signed with Kansas City in 2019, Boyd spent the final seven weeks of 2019 as a member of the Bears' practice squad.