Nagy: 'Still A Good Chance' Smith Plays Opener

August 28, 2018 - 3:28 pm

(670 The Score) Bears rookie linebacker Roquan Smith is unlikely to play in the team’s preseason finale at Soldier Field on Thursday, but that won't necessarily affect his status for the regular season. 

Still dealing with hamstring tightness, Smith is working his way toward action while the Bears target the season opener at Lambeau Field on Sept. 9 for a potential debut.

"There's still a good chance there," coach Matt Nagy said Tuesday. "Day by day with him. Right now, we've stacked two in a row for the positive, for the good. Let's just keep that thing going. If he's able to play and we feel good about it, trust me, we'll give him an opportunity to get in there."

Smith is trending the right way now, Nagy said, a week from first experiencing tightness in his hamstring during practice. He participated more in practice Tuesday after being limited for the last week. 

Smith missed the first 29 days of the preseason -- including the entirety of training camp in Bourbonnais -- before reporting to Halas Hall and signing on Aug. 14. The hope was that he could play in the preseason "dress rehearsal" last Saturday, but the hamstring tightness hindered that. 

While Smith could see playing time in the opener at Green Bay, he has yet to even factor into a position battle with third-year linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski, who's expected to start alongside Danny Trevathan. 

The Bears won't play their starters against the Bills on Thursday, Nagy confirmed. Third-string quarterback Tyler Bray will lead the offense.

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.