Bears receivers Devin Hester and Johnny Knox both suffered injuries against the Lions Sunday, but coach Lovie Smith expects them to be “fine” by the time Chicago returns from their bye this week.
Hester suffered an injury in the shoulder area (NFL.com reported it as a neck injury) in the second quarter of Chicago’s win and didn’t return. Knox injured his shin, but it’s minor. Smith said he expects all his injured players to be ready for their next game, on October 18 against Atlanta.
Hester’s injury came on a near touchdown during a strange day for the Chicago passing game. They only put up 125 net passing yards against the Lions, but scored 48 points. They ran 28 fewer plays than Detroit, but won going away.
In the end, Chicago has to be very happy with their 3-1 start before the break, aside from Brian Urlacher’s injury. The passing game is further along than expected this early in the year, with Knox being a huge find.
The defense has shown signs of rebounding to their 2005-2006 form, especially in their pass rush. They also hope to get starting linebackers Hunter Hillenmeyer and Pisa Tinoisamoa back after the bye.
Most importantly, Jay Cutler has thrown seven scores to one interception after his disastrous Week One.
With the Bears playing well, the NFC North is shaping up to be the most interesting division race in football, with three quality teams vying for the title.