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Chicago Bears getting closer to full strength at OTAs

Some good news from Halas Hall today.

Chicago Bears Offseason Workout Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Chicago Bears held their penultimate OTA practice today, and they did so with the media present and with some post-practice press conferences. So that means we got some real news about the team.

After the team shared a picture of him at practice yesterday, it was confirmed that corner Jaylon Johnson is back at Halas Hall participating in voluntary OTAs. He even met the media after practice to explain that his absence had nothing to do with his contract and everything to do with spending time with his daughter.

"I have a 3-year-old daughter back at home in California and I'm a dad before I'm anything else," Johnson said via the team's site. "I don't get to spend too much time with her during the season because she's back at home in California."

"I take pride in being a dad. I'm not just any old type of dad that just comes and sees their kid. I'm present. I'm spending time. I'm putting my heart into my daughter. When it comes to the offseason, I take that serious. I communicate that to the coaches and they understood and hopefully respected it. I'm going to be there for my daughter because they can find another corner. My daughter can't find another dad."

Johnson may have missed the first several voluntary practices this offseason, but he's been fully engaged with the coaches to ensure he was ready once he got to Halas Hall.

And about his contract, Johnson said, "I look forward to staying and extending with the Bears."

Also back at practice this week was offensive guard Nate Davis, Chicago's free agent pickup from the Titans, and he was immediately lined up as the starting right guard.

With Davis at Halas Hall, that means the Bears are able to get continuity built up for their projected starting five; Braxton Jones (LT), Teven Jenkins (LG), Cody Whitehair (C), Davis (RG), and rookie Darnell Wright (RT).

Reserve interior offensive lineman Lucas Patrick was practicing a bit with the starters at center today, but there was no indication it was anything more than the Bears getting him some work there.

Safety Eddie Jackson returned to practice this week for individual drills, but today he got into the team portion of practice.

"Eddie has worked his tail off to get back to where he is," head coach Matt Eberflus said in today's post-practice presser. "He's in really good shape for working with the rehab staff, and I want to commend those guys, the training staff, for getting him back—and commend Eddie also for the hard work that he's put in to get to this point."

Jackson had been rehabbing from a Lisfranc injury he suffered last November.

Coach Eberflus also gave an update on wide receiver Darnell Mooney, who is rehabbing from a fractured fibula, saying that he's "right on track" to be full go for training camp.

Receiver Chase Claypool remained sidelined with what the team called a soft tissue injury last week, but they also said it was precautionary.

The Bears will have one more OTA on Thursday, and then next week (June 13-15) they'll hold a mandatory minicamp.