Bears could be without Johnny Knox in 2012

The long road to recovery for Johnny Knox is likely going to lead the Chicago Bears wide receiver to the physically unable to perform list for the start of the 2012 season.

Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune reports multiple sources indicate Knox will be on the PUP list when the season begins. He’s slowly rehabilitating from spinal fusion surgery after he had his upper torso violently twisted as he tried to recover a loose ball in a December game vs. the Seahawks. Knox was forced to wear a back brace and is walking with a limp, per the report.

If Knox begins the season on the PUP list, that means he will not be eligible to participate in training camp because he will not have been cleared medically. That also increases the chances he will not see the field, period, in 2012.

A vertical threat who has been a good performer for the Bears, a healthy Knox would be the ideal player to have opposite newly acquired wide receiver Brandon Marshall. Knox is entering the final year of his rookie contract and the report indicates before the injury he turned down an extension that averaged $4 million per year.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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