Bears' shoddy turf for preseason opener draws criticism, even from Bears players

If Soldier Field is torn up by late December, it’s at least understandable. Bad weather and a season’s worth of Chicago Bears home games can tear up the grass. But the first preseason game of the year shouldn’t be a problem.

The Bears had an embarrassing issue Saturday for their game against the Kansas City Chiefs. The turf was chewed up, even though it was just the first home game this preseason.

Jason Lieser of the Chicago Sun-Times drew attention to the condition of the turf before the game started:

Players noticed, as did JC Tretter, the president of the NFLPA.

Soldier Field’s turf has been an issue for years. There have been concerts there over the summer including Elton John on Aug. 5. That clearly didn’t help the field.

Bears quarterback Justin Fields got acclimated to the poor field right away when he was a rookie last season.

“To be honest, last year I used our home field as an advantage because I knew how our grass was,” Fields said, via Bleacher Report.

Bears kicker Cairo Santos said the field “was really sandy, which I expected,” via NBC Sports. Santos said earlier this offseason that he finds public parks that don’t have good grass and practices there, so he can prepare for the poor conditions at Soldier Field.

On Saturday, Santos again called out the unsafe conditions of the field.

The Bears haven’t fixed the problem despite years of poor conditions on the turf. And if the turf is already this bad in mid-August, how rough will it be by the end of the season?

bears' shoddy turf for preseason opener draws criticism, even from bears players

Kansas City Chiefs’ Corey Coleman carries the ball during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Chicago Bears Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

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