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Bears' Melton closer to return from concussion

Monday - 8/26/2013, 5:40pm  ET

Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman watches from the sideline during the third quarter of an NFL preseason football game against the Oakland Raiders in Oakland, Calif., Friday, Aug. 23, 2013. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) -- Chicago Bears Pro Bowl defensive tackle Henry Melton has started to run as he recovers from a concussion, an encouraging sign with the season opener approaching.

Coach Marc Trestman said Melton ran Monday and will do so again on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Bears play Cleveland in the fourth and final preseason game on Thursday, with the season opener against Cincinnati on Sept. 8.

Melton was injured in the first preseason game at Carolina on Aug. 9. Receiver Earl Bennett, who has been out since Aug. 2 with his second concussion since December, did not appear to be as far along. Trestman said he met with the medical staff on Monday and is day to day.

Middle linebacker D.J. Williams (right calf) did some running.

"We're optimistic that he's going to be close," Trestman said.

Second-round pick Jon Bostic has been starting with Williams injured and has opened some eyes with his play. Even so, Trestman wasn't ready to declare him the starter.

The same goes for guard Kyle Long and tackle Jordan Mills on the right side of the offensive line.

"I am not going to hide from the fact that they did very well last week and have continued to improve. I'm just not ready to go the distance on exactly what we are going to do as we move forward here," Trestman said. "I can stand up here confidently and say they played well."

He also said he plans to sit most if not all the starters against Cleveland and that Jordan Palmer will get the nod at QB, with Jay Cutler and Josh McCown not expected to play and Matt Blanchard nursing a broken knuckle.

Cornerback Zack Bowman (hamstring) did not practice, while long snapper Patrick Mannelly (rib) participated after sitting out the past two games.


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