Bears' Kevin White, No. 7 pick in 2015, expected to debut Sunday

ByJeff Dickerson ESPN logo
Sunday, September 11, 2016

HOUSTON -- Barring a setback in pregame warm-ups, Chicago Bears wide receiver Kevin White is expected to make his NFL regular-season debut Sunday, league sources told

White was listed as questionable on Chicago's official injury report with a sore hamstring.

The seventh overall pick of the 2015 NFL draft, White missed his entire rookie year because of a stress fracture to his shin that required surgery.

But Bears coach John Fox said on Friday that White's history of injury will play no role in whether he suits up to face the Houston Texans in Week 1.

"Whether he played last year or not really doesn't have any effect on whether he's ready this week or not," Fox said.

White, the Bears' No. 2 receiver next to Alshon Jeffery, had a relatively quiet beginning to the 2016 preseason but led the team with four receptions for 57 yards in the exhibition finale at Cleveland.

"We thought it was important for Kevin to play, because he missed so much time in the past," offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains said. "We're excited with how he played against the Browns. He did a nice job. I think that he's a guy that's going to keep getting better and better. We're excited that way. He hasn't played football in a long time, so every day he goes out, he's getting better."

In two collegiate seasons at West Virginia, White caught 144 passes for 1,954 yards and 15 touchdowns.

"I've been working with Kevin all offseason and before that a little bit," quarterback Jay Cutler said. "I know a lot about Kevin. I know what he likes and what he doesn't like, how he runs routes. It's just a matter of experience. He just has to get out there, and there are things he has to experience and go through in his first game. You got to get through the jitters, and after that you just have to play football. He's a very good football player."