The Chicago Bears announced at least a schedule change to their 9:20 a.m. practice Thursday as multiple professional sports teams around the country canceled games and practices in protest over the Kenosha police shooting of Jacob Blake.

a group of football players on the field: Chicago Bears defensive players warm up during training camp at Halas Hall in Lake Forest on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020.

© Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS
Chicago Bears defensive players warm up during training camp at Halas Hall in Lake Forest on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020.

A Bears media relations representative didn’t immediately give a reason for the schedule change.

Media gather about an hour before practice each day because of COVID-19 protocols and already were in place at the back practice fields at Halas Hall.

Several coaches and players had walked to the field, and it was evident they at the least were planning to share a message during practice. However, the Bears said it is prohibited to report more under the team’s media policy.

Reporters were then asked to leave the facility as coaches also cleared the field.

The NBA canceled all of its games in the bubble Wednesday night and some MLB, WNBA and MLS teams followed suit in protest of police brutality.

The Indianapolis Colts, New York Jets, Green Bay Packers and the Washington Football Team were among the NFL teams to at least postpone practice Thursday.

The Bears are the closest NFL team to Kenosha, which is about 30 miles north of where the Bears practice in Lake Forest.

The Bears also held a team meeting Tuesday to discuss the recent events in Kenosha, which started when a police officer shot Blake in the back seven times in front of his children as he tried to enter his car. Blake survived but reportedly was paralyzed from the waist down.

Bears coach Matt Nagy started his post-practice news conference Tuesday by addressing the Blake shooting.

“It’s very disturbing for everybody, and it has to stop,” Nagy said. “We talked about it with our football team, the biggest thing is all of us understanding the platform that we have and that we need to use that every single day. It’s imperative that we do that and use that platform and do it together. Again, just all of our thoughts and prayers are with (Blake). Being so close to where we are at right now, we’re thinking about him and his family and want nothing but the best for him.”

Left tackle Charles Leno said he was interested in helping the Kenosha community and continuing to spread awareness of police brutality.

“I mean, honestly, this has been a problem,” Leno said. “We know it’s been a problem. We just need more awareness and to spread more awareness. And within that awareness, also spread compassion and understanding for others. And with that will come love, and we need more of that as well.”

Several Bears players tweeted related messages, including inside linebacker and defensive leader Danny Trevathan, who used the hashtag #JusticeForJacobBlake.

“It’s like every other day man,” Trevathan tweeted. “I’m so sick of the senseless killings of (unarmed) Black Americans. To this day all we want is to be treated equal. #JusticeForJacobBlake”


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