CANTON, Ohio – Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky marveled at a football—much rounder than the modern-day version—that was used in the NFL in the 1920s.
Defensive backs Eddie Jackson and Cre'Von LeBlanc admired busts of some of the greatest professional football players in the history of the sport.
The Bears will play the Baltimore Ravens in the league's annual Hall of Fame Game Thursday night in Canton. But the first thing that Trubisky, Jackson, LeBlanc and their teammates did after their plane landed Wednesday evening was tour the Hall of Fame.
"It was awesome, for the guys to be able to see everything," coach Matt Nagy told ChicagoBears.com. "You could see the conversations they were having. It's history. We got to spend a good 45 minutes in there and it was good for them. They had fun."
The Bears and Ravens were selected to play in this year's Hall of Fame Game because their former star middle linebackers, Brian Urlacher and Ray Lewis, respectively, are part of the Hall of Fame's Class of 2018 that will be enshrined Saturday night.
"It's just another great memory to be a part of," Bears cornerback Prince Amukamara said after touring the Hall. "We are here for Mr. Urlacher and excited to celebrate with him and honor him. I'm sure most if not all of us have aspirations to get here. Everyone is excited, and it's just another reminder of why we play this game."
Bears guard Kyle Long—the son of Raiders Hall of Famer Howie Long—also enjoyed the visit.
"It's an amazing experience," Long said. "Every year you get older and gain a bigger appreciation for the things you get to see and some of the history you get to be a part of. It just shows how celebrated our history as a league is. It's really important for the young guys to see this."
Long is proud that the Bears have the most players of any NFL team in the Hall of Fame—a number that will increase to 28 with Urlacher's enshrinement.
"Being part of the Chicago Bears is amazing," Long said. "We have a remarkable number of players in the Hall of Fame. Those guys have laid the groundwork for us to be able to go forward and carve our own paths."
Long was just 11 years old when his father was inducted in 2000.
"To get to see my dad in there is really cool," Long said. "I was really young in 2000. I just remember being around a lot of legends, not really understanding or grasping what it was to be here. Now that I've gotten older and I play the game for a living, you get an understanding."
A day before playing the Ravens in Canton, Ohio, Bears players toured the Pro Football Hall of Fame.