LAKE FOREST – The first question to the Bears’ starting quarterback Wednesday at Halas Hall was a very simple yet important one: How are you feeling?
“I’m feeling alright. Of course, better than Sunday,” said Justin Fields when asked that inquiry to lead off his news conference. “Been getting a lot of treatment and trying to get this shoulder right.”
That’s good news for the Bears and fans who wondered how long the left shoulder injury might keep the team’s No. 1 quarterback out of the lineup. Fields was hurt on the first play of the Bears’ final drive in the loss to the Falcons on Sunday in Atlanta.
Matt Eberflus continues to classify the injury as “day-to-day,” ruling out a trip to the injured reserved list on Wednesday morning ahead of the Bears’ game with the Jets on Sunday.
While he wouldn’t reveal exactly what Fields’ injury is, the quarterback was forthcoming with that information.
“It’s a separated shoulder with partially torn ligaments – basically like an AC joint,” said Fields when asked about what happened to his left shoulder. “That’s my understanding of it.”
Fields’ estimated participation during Wednesday’s walkthrough was limited with his status likely to be clearer during practices on Thursday and Friday.
When asked directly if he could play today with the injury, Fields said no, but has hope for improvement throughout the week leading up to the game against the Jets.
“Different motions of me like handing off the ball, throwing, when I’m finishing my throw, I feel it pretty much every throw,” said Fields when asked about the left shoulder pain. “It’s just me going through those motions, getting it stronger, and seeing how it fees come Saturday, Sunday.”
Fields is in the midst of the best stretch of his NFL career at the moment as he’s rushed for 640 yards in his last six games with six touchdowns. His 178 yards on the ground against the Dolphins on November 6th set the NFL regular season single-game record for rushing by a quarterback.
He’s also become the first Bears signalcaller in the Super Bowl era to have a running touchdown in five-straight games.
For the season, Fields has 834 yards (6.8 per carry) with seven touchdowns rushing while completing 59.6 percent of his passes for 1,642 yards and 13 touchdowns compared to eight interceptions.
The quarterback said he’s being mindful of balancing the desire to play while also not making the injury any worse.
“I just feel like if I can play and that I’m not furthering the risk of injury and I can do what I need to do to be able to protect myself, I think that would be good enough for me to play,” said Fields.