By Chris Emma–

CHICAGO (CBS) — A quarterback at Illinois State, Bears receiver Cam Meredith can still bring it with high velocity. He showed that with a heater for the ceremonial first pitch at Wrigley Field on Friday.

But more importantly, Meredith has been on the receiving end of footballs in the last week, a notable step after a freak injury in OTAs in early June in which he tore a ligament in his thumb. Meredith is nearing 100 percent and will be with the Bears when they first take the field for training camp Thursday, a source said.

The Bears declined to make Meredith available for comment during his guest appearance at Wrigley Field. He’s expected to address the media after Thursday’s practice in Bourbonnais.

Meredith’s presence with the Bears will be important as new quarterback Mike Glennon seeks targets while establishing himself with the offense. In 2016, Meredith had a breakout campaign, recording a team-leading 66 receptions for 888 yards and four touchdowns in 14 games. Meredith began the season in a reserve role before assuming the place of the injured Kevin White in the Bears’ offense.

The Bears report to Bourbonnais on Wednesday, where Meredith could be limited in the first practices.

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670 and like his Facebook page.