Tempers flare at practice: Chicago Bears training camp report for Aug. 5

Chase Claypool, Eddie Jackson instigate fight at practice

Chicago Bears defensive back Eddie Jackson smiles as he works on the field with teammates during practice, Wednesday, June 7, 2023, in Lake Forest.

LAKE FOREST – Things became chippy for the Bears during practice Saturday at Halas Hall.

Two minor scuffles developed early on in practice, but things seemed to calm down after the initial outbursts.

Shaw Local will be keeping tabs on everything that happens at camp. Shaw Local Bears beat reporter Sean Hammond will be out at Halas Hall in Lake Forest each day during camp. Follow him on Twitter at @sean_hammond and on Instagram @bears_reporter. Follow Shaw Local Bears analyst Marc Silverman on Twitter at @WaddleandSilvy.

Here’s the latest from Saturday’s practice.

Cooler heads: The fireworks began when safety Eddie Jackson hit receiver Chase Claypool rather hard near the end of one play. The hit was arguably late, although defensive coordinator Alan Williams said he would have to check the tape.

“We have good ball players,” Williams said. “We have good decision makers. With Eddie, Eddie’s a phenomenal decision maker.”

Claypool took exception to the hit and came up swinging. Multiple players were involved in the scuffle, which didn’t last longer than a few seconds. Jackson remained agitated even after things were separated. He wanted to have a chat with Claypool but the defensive coaches wouldn’t let him leave the defensive sideline.

A second scuffle happened when undrafted rookie Aron Cruickshank was surrounded by defenders and starting pushing, leading to another minor shoving match.

For a brief moment after the period ended, Jackson, Justin Fields, Darnell Mooney and Jaylon Johnson had a chat. Following that, things remained relatively calm throughout the remainder of practice.

“We have good ball players. We have good decision makers. With Eddie [Jackson], Eddie’s a phenomenal decision maker.”

—  Alan Williams, Bears defensive coordinator

Ups and downs: During an 11-on-11 session, Fields and the first-team offense failed to pick up a first down on their first attempt against the first-team defense. On the second attempt, the Bears moved the chains several times. Khalil Herbert had a big gain. D’Onta Foreman also made a couple of nice plays.

Later, in a two-minute drill, Fields led the first-team offense to a field goal against the reserve defenders. He completed a handful of passes along the way to Cole Kmet, DJ Moore, Equanimeous St. Brown and Velus Jones Jr. Kicker Andre Szmyt made a 47-yard field goal try.

The biggest cheer of the day from the fans came from the second-team offense when backup QB PJ Walker connected with receiver Nsimba Webster for a touchdown on a deep ball.

Tough day: Rookie receiver Tyler Scott had a bit of a rough day, dropping a couple of passes. He also muffed a punt. On the punt, the ball slipped through his hands, but he was able to grab it off the ground before the punt coverage scooped it up.

In the same live session, second-year receiver Velus Jones Jr. fielded a punt cleanly. Those two seem like the favorite for the punt return job early on.

Injury updates: Linebacker Tremaine Edmunds was present, but sat out practice for the second consecutive day. Williams said he has “zero concern” about Edmunds missing time. The Bears just signed the 25-year-old linebacker to a four-year, $72 million contract.

“You still see the leadership show,” Williams said. “You still see the energy show up. You still see the looking and talking to the younger guys. That’s kind of the mark of a leader when they can’t be out there.”

Left guard Teven Jenkins returned to the field after sitting out Friday.

The following players were present but not participating Saturday: safety Jaquan Brisker, linebacker Jack Sanborn, right guard Nate Davis, receiver Dante Pettis and defensive end DeMarcus Walker.

Recent additions Yannick Ngakoue and Marcedes Lewis are not practicing yet.

Sean Hammond

Sean Hammond

Sean is the Chicago Bears beat reporter for the Shaw Local News Network. He has covered the Bears since 2020. Prior to writing about the Bears, he covered high school sports for the Northwest Herald and contributed to Friday Night Drive. Sean joined Shaw Media in 2016.