Kyler Gordon, back at Chicago Bears training camp, says making his potential debut in Seattle ‘was meant to be’ – The Denver Post


Chicago Bears cornerback Kyler Gordon has good reason to want to play in Thursday’s preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field.

The second-round pick sat out six training camp practices and the preseason opener Saturday with an undisclosed injury, so he was itching to return to the practice field Monday at Halas Hall.

The possibility of making his NFL preseason debut in his home state with family and friends on hand is even more exciting for Gordon. He was born and went to high school about 35 minutes from Seattle and played college football at Washington, where he totaled 98 tackles, three sacks, two interceptions and 14 passes defended over four seasons.

“I’ll be ready,” Gordon said. “I think it was meant to be. It’s God’s plan. I’m just excited. It’s a cool thing to be able to say it happened in my life.”

Gordon was one of several injured players to return to practice Monday in at least a limited capacity, taking reps at nickel back, where he played most often before he was hurt. Also returning were running back David Montgomery, tight end Cole Kmet, wide receiver Velus Jones Jr., cornerbacks Kindle Vildor and Duke Shelley and defensive lineman Angelo Blackson.

Per coach Matt Eberflus’ policy, Gordon didn’t reveal what kept him out more than a week. He also missed time during the offseason program with an injury.

Coaches have thrown a lot at Gordon in the three-plus months since he was drafted, asking him to practice at both outside cornerback and nickel. Defensive coordinator Alan Williams said last week Gordon displayed “veteran habits” while he was injured, staying attentive in meetings, bringing in questions and staying late to watch film.

Gordon said he tried to stay prepared by taking mental reps while on the sideline.

“I talked to Coach about getting the play sheet,” Gordon said. “(I tried to) make sure I’m still locked in to practice and keeping my eyes on every play, what’s going on. Taking mental reps and putting myself in the positions out there and making sure I’m staying on my reads, my keys, just staying on top of everything with film and all that.”

Gordon took in the Soldier Field atmosphere during Saturday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs and said he thought about how he wanted to be defending against quarterback Patrick Mahomes “every play.”

“I was like, ‘Ah, I’m ready to compete,’” Gordon said. “I want to be the dude, the obstacle for him.’”

Instead, Gordon got to watch as rookie safety Jaquan Brisker, a fellow second-round pick, put together a nice outing. In one second-quarter series, Brisker — who sat out practice Monday — recorded a tackle, a tackle for a loss and a near interception.

“I knew he was going to do his thing,” Gordon said. “And it was exciting to see him go out there and do all that, be physical and tough, get his hands on the ball. It was cool. I was happy for him.”

Like Gordon, Jones stressed the importance of taking mental reps while the third-round pick sat out a week of practices and the Chiefs game with an injury.

With wide receivers Byron Pringle, N’Keal Harry and David Moore out with injuries, Jones could have a good opportunity to show what he can do on offense — on top of his return skills — if he can make it back for preseason action. Jones didn’t reveal whether he expects to play Thursday, but he has tried to stay ready.

“I’m just always at night visualizing myself making plays on certain play calls,” Jones said. “I picture seeing myself in there when one of the guys runs a route and thinking about how they looked in their route, the details. Or I can take something from their game, something I might like.”



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