Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio spoke to reporters after Wednesday’s OTA practice and acknowledged “a little bit of question there of depth and depth quality” when it came to the team’s outside linebackers.
The team hoped that they’d solved one question at the position when they picked Leonard Floyd in the first round of the 2016 draft and he’s notched 12.5 sacks through two seasons, but injuries have cost him 10 games and left uncertainty about how much the Bears can count on him moving forward. Floyd ended last year on injured reserve with a knee injury and returned to 7-on-7 work this week, which will give him a chance to catch up on some missing development.
“I think it delayed his development more last year when it happened,” Fangio said, via the Chicago Tribune. “There’s no way around that. Everyone needs as many reps in practice as they can get, and he’s really anxious to do it. He has been begging the trainers and medical people to let him out there a little earlier. I think he’ll overcome it.”
The Bears parted ways with Lamarr Houston, Pernell McPhee and Willie Young this offseason, leaving Sam Acho, free agent acquisition Aaron Lynch and sixth-round pick Kylie Fitts as options to join Floyd at outside linebacker this year. If Floyd can stay healthy to lead the group, it would help answer Fangio’s questions in a positive manner.