Chicago Bears star linebacker Brian Urlacher plans to play on Sunday against the New Orleans Saints despite the fact that his mother Lavoyda Lenard unexpectedly died on Monday.
Yesterday I reported that Urlacher was taking an unknown leave of absence to deal with the tragedy and now it looks like he has had a change of heart.
Urlacher isn't speaking with the press at this time however head coach Lovie Smith announced that he plans to play against the Saints, adding:
"It was good to get him back today," and "Sometimes when you're going through tough times like he is right now, you want to get back with your support group, which is here with his teammates.Smith continued:
"It was good to get him back, see his face, and show some support that way. Football is pretty important to him. So I know he's excited about playing the game this Sunday."Services for Lavoyda Lenard will be held in New Mexico on Saturday and according to ESPN her funeral will be attended by George McCaskey, president Ted Phillips, general manager Jerry Angelo, Smith, linebackers coach Bob Babich and linebacker Lance Briggs.
When asked if he was ready to be back on the field defensive end Corey Wootton said of Urlacher:
"I think he's definitely going to be playing this one for his mom. I think he is going to have one of the best games of his career."While Wooten added:
"He definitely seemed focused on the task at hand, but I'm sure in the back of his mind there are some thoughts about his mother."I'm personally glad to see Urlacher land back on his feet and as a huge Bears fan I can't wait to tune in on Sunday to watch the Bears take on Brew Brees and the Saints.
Hear that loud sigh of relief? That's the sound millions of Chicago fans are making.