One of those starters was second-year linebacker Roquan Smith, who was a surprise scratch for personal reasons. After the game, Bears head coach Matt Nagy declined to comment on why Smith missed the game, only reiterating that it was due to personal reasons.
Rumors circulated on Twitter Sunday night suggesting Smith may have been involved in a car accident in Chicago Saturday evening in which someone drove an expensive automobile into a parked car.
Terrence Tomlin Tweeted that he heard rumors that images of a car involved in an accident belonged to Smith:
Matt Nagy seemed oddly uncomfortable when asked about Smith postgame, piquing the interest of some.
But per Don Rossi, the Chicago Tribune’s Rich Campbell said on 670 The Score that he had obtained a copy of the police report from the crash and Roquan Smith was not involved in any way.
Jarrett Payton, the son of legendary Bears running back Walter Payton, also tweeted in support of Smith:
While Smith was reportedly NOT involved in any kind of car accident, NFL insider Adam Schefter said Monday afternoon on ESPN1000 that Smith’s behavior had reportedly been erratic all week, as reported by DaTailGateShow.
When asked about Smith a second time, Bears Coach Matt Nagy was mum, echoed his original sentiments Monday, offering up no new information and reiterating that he wouldn’t comment at all due to the personal nature of the issue.
NFL insider for ESPN Dan Graziano went on the sports talk program Get Up Tuesday morning, and had this to say regarding Smith:
“Roquan Smith is dealing with a personal issue that could keep him out for an indefinite period of time. A couple of people close to the situation have told me that he hasn’t been acting like himself, whatever that means, around practice and around the building the last couple of weeks, so the team wants to give him some time to deal with whatever it is he’s dealing with off the field,” Graziano said.
Graziano was the first to break the news that Smith could be out indefinitely. Graziano also acknowledged that because Matt Nagy, Smith himself, or anyone connected to the team has not publicly commented on Smith’s status, the second-year linebacker’s return to the lineup is ultimately anybody’s guess. “At this point, they really don’t know how much time…I mean, he could be back this week, but it sounds like the kind of thing that could keep him out for a little while,” Graziano said.
Some of Smith’s teammates have been asked about his absence and what he’s dealing with, and they don’t seem to know what’s happening with him. Smith was slated to join fellow Bears Prince Amukamara, Javon Wims, and Roy-Robertson Harris at the Monday Night Lights breast cancer awareness event in Chicago Monday evening and didn’t attend. When asked about Smith, Amukamara said he had no idea what was happening with his current teammate.
The Bears will head to London this week before they begin their bye week during week six, so hopefully Smith gets all the time he needs to deal with the issues he’s facing. We’ll keep you posted on Roquan Smith’s status as it changes.