Brian Urlacher still not ready, pledges to play Sept. 9

Brian Urlacher is back in training camp with the Chicago Bears after a personal absence but he still does not have a timetable to return to the practice field.

The middle linebacker has not practiced since July 31 because of a sore left knee and he missed the team’s preseason opener vs. Denver last week. If Urlacher is not on the field soon at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill., it is unlikely he will play in the next game Saturday against the Washington Redskins at Soldier Field.

“I hate sitting out,” he said. “I practiced the first four or five days and felt pretty good, then it got sore and a little swollen, so I’m taking some time off right now.”

Urlacher, who sprained the MCL and PCL in his left knee in the Jan. 1 season finale at Minnesota, has not had surgery. He spent the entire offseason rehabilitating from the injury so there is a level of concern at this point but he and everyone else associated with the team pledge he will be ready for the season opener Sept. 9 vs. the Indianapolis Colts.

“Once I’m back out there again we’ll monitor my reps and try to make it where it doesn’t blow up again,” he said. “It’s hard to tell with an injury like I had what causes it and why it’s doing this.

“Sept. 9 I’ll be ready to play for sure. That’s really all that matters to me. Preseason games and all these practices, I’d love to be out there but I’m not going to put myself in jeopardy of missing the first game.”

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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