Bears institute conditioning test in camp this summer

Lovie Smith typically sticks with his routine during training camp.

But the Chicago Bears coach has added a new wrinkle this summer as the club will put its players through a conditioning test this afternoon at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. It is the first time in nine summers with the team Smith has employed a conditioning test.

Perhaps it has something to do with the background of new general manager Phil Emery who was a strength and conditioning coach at the college level before becoming a pro scout. Some veteran players believe it has to do with the longer than usual layoff the team had since the end of the offseason program on June 14, 40 days before players were required to report to camp.

The Bears have typically been in good shape under Smith and in recent summers the only player that has had issues has been former defensive tackle Marcus Harrison.

The Bears will practice for the first time Thursday and the first practice in full pads will be Saturday.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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