General manager Ryan Pace spoke with Jeff Joniak Sunday morning on the Bears pregame radio show on WBBM Newsradio 780 AM and 105.9 FM. The following is a transcript of Pace's comments:
On communication throughout the organization involving the COVID-19 issues the team experienced this past week:
"I think our communication is one of our strengths, and it's a credit to Matt [Nagy]. It comes down to explaining the 'why' when we've got to make different decisions that are happening, and that could be schedule changes. I think our team trusts us in these moments, and we know what kind of season it is. Changes are going to happen along the way, and we've just got to be the team that's great at adapting and adjusting. That's what good teams do, and that's what we're doing."
On center Cody Whitehair following all COVID-19 protocols:
"Cody's a complete pro. We've said all along that it's inevitable; there's going to be positive cases that come into your building. But if you're able to minimize it and isolate it, as was the case with Cody, that means you're doing a good job in your building; people wearing masks, social distancing. All the measures we've taken, I think it's a credit to that process."
On having confidence in the young offensive linemen who will play against the Titans in place of injured veterans:
"I think when you look at it, a loss of any player at any position is always a concern, and this week we were hit at multiple players at one position. That can compound the difficulty a little bit. But that's the situation. We're confident in our players. They're all here for a reason, and it's because we believe in their ability. I think it's a credit to our coaches, especially Juan Castillo. Those guys put in the work all season long to prepare for these moments and these situations, and everyone on our team is ready to go because of that."
On competition with other teams to find players to bring in during the season:
"This time of the year it always ramps up, as you get to kind of the midpoint of the season. But it's even more competitive obviously this year, knowing the protocols. Just the on-boarding process, to get a guy in here, it takes about a week to get him in here. So it's tough to forecast where the injuries are going to occur. Our pro personnel department, big credit to them, between Josh [Lucas], Champ [Kelly], Jeff King, Brad [Obee] and Chris White, for just being proactive and bringing guys in. I think of a guy like Dwayne Harris, who's come in and done a good job with the punt returns. That was a proactive signing. Even going back to Cairo Santos, and just thinking ahead. Those guys are doing a really good job of that and I'm proud of them."
On whether Mitchell Trubisky will be able to return from his right shoulder injury and play again this season:
"Yeah, like with any player, we're just being thorough with a player's health. That comes first. Mitch went out to L.A., [to see] one of the top shoulder specialists for a second opinion. No surgery, which is obviously really good news. He's back in Chicago now rehabbing. He's out this week versus Tennessee obviously. But it's week-to-week as we go forward, and we'll keep a close eye on his progress. But it's been positive news."
On Tyler Bray, who will serve as the Bears' No. 2 quarterback in place of Trubisky against the Titans:
"He knows the system so well and he's a confident player with a strong arm and good size. Matt was his position coach in Kansas City and then Matt became the coordinator there and now the [Bears] head coach. So Matt's been with Bray from the very beginning, the moment he came into their building, and he's seen his maturation as a player. I'm glad we have Bray; he's a total pro. He doesn't blink in this situation at all."
On the Bears' ongoing struggle to score in the third quarter:
"We know obviously we've had some lulls there. We need to be better in that area. We've talked about our mistakes to this point and what we could do to fix it. It's 100 percent an area of focus for us, the third quarter. We know what we're capable of. I know Matt and his staff, along with the players, they're working to address that."
On the incident involving Javon Wims last Sunday against the Saints and if there will be further discipline from the Bears in addition to the two-game suspension imposed by the NFL:
"We're still talking through that. It's not acceptable for our team. It's so disappointing because that's not who Javon is, and we expect so much more from him. We drafted him for a reason. It doesn't matter first round, seventh round, we drafted him for a reason. Both Matt and I have addressed it with him and we'll go forward. But Javon knows how we feel."
On Titans receiver Corey Davis:
"A first-round pick that's really come on. When you turn on the tape right now of the Titans, he jumps out. He's a really good route runner. He knows how to set guys up. He's almost 6-3, and for a receiver with that type of height, he gets in and out of his breaks extremely well. He's got really good hands. He's a guy that'll win the 50/50 ball, the contested catch situation. He's a good player that's really still ascending in his career."