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Urlacher remains optimistic BOURBONNAIS, I

Published: Friday, Aug. 17, 2012 11:15 a.m. CDT

BOURBONNAIS, Ill. – Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee early Tuesday morning, maintained that Sept. 9 – the season opener versus the Colts – remains his target date for returning to the field.

The middle linebacker addressed the media Thursday and remained optimistic about his recovery.

“I feel good. Better,’’ Urlacher said. “I feel relief right now.’’

Urlacher originally had no intentions of getting his knee scoped. He and the team decided to go forward with the procedure Monday night.

When pressed about a timetable for returning to practice, Urlacher didn’t budge.

“Sept. 9, that’s all I care about,’’ he said.

Urlacher originally suffered a second-degree sprained medial collateral ligament and partially sprained posterior collateral ligament during a Jan. 1 season-ending win at Minnesota. He did not have surgery following the injury.

Urlacher would have been worried if the process would have involved a major reconstruction. From the moment he was told he needed just a scope, he was unconcerned.

“The scope is a one-to-two week, I guess, recovery, so it doesn’t seem like that big of a deal to me,’’ Urlacher said. “It’s the first time I’ve had something done on my knee, so it’s a little different. But if I’m going to have something done, that’s the thing to be done.’’

Urlacher was asked about the likelihood of enduring knee pain throughout the regular season. After the Bears start the season Sept. 9, they have a quick turnaround with a Thursday night matchup in Green Bay.

``It could be some, there might not be any, I don’t know,’’ he said. ``I’m sure it’s not going to feel comfortable all season long. I don’t think after the first game, anyone is healthy.’’

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©2012 the Chicago Tribune

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