Bears receiver Alshon Jeffery has picked up in training camp where he left off last season, catching virtually every pass thrown in his direction and even some that aren't.
"His catch radius is very evident out here," said coach Marc Trestman. "You can see it. He's got big hands. He's got long arms and he's focused on making plays."
|Alshon Jeffery bursts down the sideline during practice at training camp.|
Jeffery hauled in two long passes from Jay Cutler in Saturday's practice after making several nifty grabs in Friday's workout, reaching high to pluck the ball out of the air.
"Jay's got a real comfort level with both Alshon and Brandon [Marshall] in terms of where to throw the ball when they're covered, knowing that it'll either be their ball or nobody's ball," Trestman said. "We've seen that the last couple days and we've seen that a little bit with Marquess [Wilson] as well."
Last season Jeffery ranked sixth in the NFL among receivers with 1,421 yards, the second most in Bears history, and was 10th with 89 receptions, the sixth most ever by a Bears player.
Jeffery recorded the two most prolific receiving games in franchise history in 2013 with 249 yards against the Vikings and 218 yards versus the Saints. The previous single-game record of 214 yards by Harlon Hill had stood since 1954. In the process, Jeffery became one of only eight players in NFL history to produce two 200-yard games in the same season.
Getting close: Right guard Kyle Long remains sidelined with a viral infection. The 2013 first-round draft pick is scheduled to be re-evaluated next week.
"I think he's close," Trestman said. "I know he's champing at the bit to get back out here. He's a wreck emotionally to get back out there. He's excited to get back out here. It's day-to-day but we're going to do it right. When the doctors say he's ready to go, he'll be out there.
Get the view from the field during the 2nd day of Bears Training Camp practice.
"He's trained really hard this year and this was a setback that bothered him and unnerved us from the standpoint that we wanted to see him get off to a great start. But that's the way it is."
Cornerback Tim Jennings (quad) and safeties Craig Steltz (groin) and Chris Conte (shoulder) also sat out practice. Defensive end Willie Young didn't finish the workout due to quad soreness.
Sights seen: In Saturday's practice, Marshall made a nifty one-handed catch along the right sideline. … Receiver Micheal Spurlock also delivered some impressive catches in drills. … Linebacker Jonathan Bostic broke up a Cutler pass in the back of the end zone intended for tight end Martellus Bennett. … Defensive end Trevor Scott recorded a "sack" in a two-minute drill for the second straight day.
Fight club: On one play during an 11-on-11 drill, right tackle Jordan Mills scuffled with defensive end Lamarr Houston.
"There are times in practice when a player might lose his mind," Trestman said. "The bottom line is, when we talk about it in meetings, fighting is a disciplinary issue. If it was a game, we would've lost both players. And it's a safety issue.
"The guys who were involved in it were both remorseful and they don't want it to happen. They know how it hurts a football team. The thing you like to see is that it didn't linger. The team got back to work. There were no other altercations and I thought overall, when you have 99 percent of your practice that is cooperative with this kind of intensity, even though we are in shorts and not in pads, that's the way we sell it to guys, that one play can lose players and it's a safety issue."