When Matt Nagy met with reporters Wednesday before practice, he expressed optimism that quarterback Mitchell Trubisky would start Sunday night's game against the Rams.
"I feel strong that he will play," said the Bears coach, "but I've got to see more."
After missing two games with a right shoulder injury he sustained Nov. 18 in a win over the Vikings, Trubisky not only practiced without restrictions Wednesday but showed that he appears ready to return to game action.
"He looked good," Nagy said Thursday. "He was throwing the ball strong. He felt good. That's what I was hoping for yesterday when I talked to you all in the morning. I thought everything he did yesterday showed he's where we were hoping he'd be at."
Given those developments, it appears that barring a setback, Trubisky will start Sunday night's clash of NFC division leaders at Soldier Field.
"Yesterday was his true first day of really being back 100 percent and getting into it," Nagy said. "He's at a point where he's 100 percent participating, so let's put together another 100 percent participation day and make sure that he's feeling good, and if he does, it's go time.
"I said yesterday I feel good about where he's at. I thought yesterday the way he threw he did nothing to change my mind, and so we just want to keep connecting those days together and ultimately the goal is to get him out there."
Trubisky said Wednesday that his arm feels "really good," he's "really close" to being 100 percent healthy and he expects to play Sunday night against the Rams.
"I do; I've just got to show coach that I can play," Trubisky said at the time. "I'm feeling good about where I'm at. As long as I can show them that I can go out there every day and make all the throws and be the player that they know I am, I feel confident that I'll be able to go."
Starting the first 10 games of the season, Trubisky completed 65.4 percent of his passes for 2,469 yards with 20 touchdowns, nine interceptions and a 97.7 passer rating that ranks 15th in the NFL. He has also rushed for 363 yards and three TDs on 51 carries.
Nagy liked what he saw not only from Trubisky's arm in practice Wednesday but the way he jumped right back in and took command of the huddle.
"Everyone's so focused on the physical side," Nagy said. "But there's a lot of other parts of it, too, the intangibles of being a leader in the huddle, what you're like in the classroom, and he's been good with all of that."