Harris ready to regain starting spot

October, 19, 2011
10/19/11
4:59
PM ET
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Chicago Bears safety Chris Harris returned to the practice field Wednesday, determined to get past his benching and deactivation last week, followed by a subsequent request to seek permission for a trade.

Asked whether the objective was to earn back his starting job, Harris didn't hesitate.

"Absolutely," he said. "I'm a competitor. So I'm gonna do everything right, everything in my power to get back out on the field."

The NFL's trade deadline on Tuesday passed without the team consummating a deal to move Harris, who was benched last week and deactivated for Sunday's win over the Vikings before requesting and receiving permission to seek a trade. Harris' agent Albert Elias said his client's availability sparked interest and discussion with other teams.

Elias added that Harris decided "to finish with the Bears." General manager Jerry Angelo said he spoke with Harris and his representatives on Tuesday, and the group seemed to resolve some of their differences. Interestingly, though, Bears coach Lovie Smith hasn't spoken to Harris about any of the latest developments.

Asked whether they've conducted any discussions, Harris flatly said, "No."

"I can't really get into that," he added. "It was a decision that the coaching staff made. It's a decision that I can't control. So I won't worry myself with it."

Harris cracked a smile when asked how Smith's fickle nature regarding safeties could lead to him regaining his spot in the starting lineup. Through the first six games, the Bears have utilized five combinations of starters at safety.

"That's a great question," Harris said smiling. "Possibly [I could become a starter again]. As you can tell, nothing here is really set in stone at the safety position. Hopefully, I'm back out there at some point in time this season."

Michael C. Wright

ESPN Chicago Bears reporter

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