The Chicago Bears listed defensive tackle Tommie Harris as doubtful with a knee injury on this week’s injury report, and said after Sunday’s loss to the Bengals that his knee kept him out of the game.
But afterward Harris said he could have played, and in his press conference today Bears coach Lovie Smith acknowledged that was true.
“No, there isn’t anything wrong with Tommie,” Smith said. “Tommie didn’t play this week. It was more of a coach’s decision as much as anything. He has had some [knee] soreness. He didn’t practice all week. I thought we had better options. All player decisions on who’s going to dress is a game-day decision: who gives us the best opportunity to play. Could Tommie have played if I wanted him to? Yes. But I thought we could get a better Tommie if we let him rest this past week and get ready for this week.”
Harris has said his knee is fine and he wants to play, and Smith said he expects Harris to play against the Browns this week.