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Justin Fields to start Bears' preseason opener | Quick Hits

Bears quarterback Justin Fields
Bears quarterback Justin Fields

Coach Matt Eberflus revealed Wednesday that quarterback Justin Fields will be among the Bears starters who play in Saturday's preseason opener against the Titans at Soldier Field.

Eberflus indicated that snap count ranges will be determined for each individual and not position groups or complete units on the depth chart.

"We've got to figure that out here in the next couple days," Eberflus said, "and we'll talk with the coaches about guys, when they're going to play and how many reps for each guy. That will be an individualized thing. We'll have selected starters play here and there and then we'll figure that out as we go with the coaches today."

Last year when Fields was learning a new offense, he started the preseason opener against the Chiefs and completed 4 of 7 passes for 48 yards on the Bears' first three possessions before being replaced by Trevor Siemian.

Although Fields is more familiar with the offense this year, the Bears feel it's just important for him to see preseason action.

"I just think you gauge it year-by-year," Eberflus said. "And you make an educated decision based on what your offensive coordinator's saying to you and what your quarterback coach is saying to you and what you see with your eyes as the head football coach. You just take in all the information and make a decision, and that's the decision we made."

Running back Khalil Herbert believes that getting live reps in preseason games is beneficial.

"We don't tackle in camps," he said. "Getting taken to the ground for the first time, it's always after that first tackle when you're like, 'All right, we're back.' Really just that and getting those live reps with your O-line and your offense. You can't really recreate those scenarios in practice. Having those in a game-like situation is vital."

Back at it: The Bears have removed receiver Dante Pettis from the active/non-football injury list, making him eligible to practice for the first time in training camp.

No worries: Eberflus said that he is not concerned linebacker Tremaine Edmunds and defensive end DeMarcus Walker are in jeopardy of missing the Sept. 10 season opener against the Packers with the undisclosed injuries that have currently sidelined them in training camp.

"No, no concern," Eberflus said. "They're getting all the walkthroughs, they're getting all the mental work right now as they rehab back, so there's command there. Tremaine's playing his position in the walkthroughs, making all the calls, so we're squared away. So getting back they'll be good."

Just for openers: Mike Vrabel—who's entering his sixth season as Titans head coach—has announced that assistant head coach/defensive line coach Terrell Williams will handle head-coaching duties Saturday against the Bears.

Eberflus was asked if he intends to do the same thing with one of his assistants.

"Where we are at the Chicago Bears right now, I just feel that we need to have everybody in their responsibilities so that we can polish up our stuff as we get going," he said. "This is our first preseason game. And then we need to polish it up as we go and then get ready for that first game. I think it's a great thing what [Vrabel] is doing, and that's where they are right now."

Spidey-senses: For the first time, Eberflus told reporters which play last season led him to tag nickel back Kyler Gordon with the nickname "Spider-man."

"I think it was the fumble recovery at Philly," Eberflus said. "When you looked at him on that play, he just reminded me of moving like Spiderman, so that's when he got it."

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