LAKE FOREST, Ill. (CBS) — Bears Training Camp got under way officially at Halas Hall Wednesday.

The team did not know until the last minute whether or not defensive tackle Eddie Goldman would be there. He opted out last year because of COVID-19.

READ MORE: City Was Warned About Thousands of Corroding Light Poles But Failed to Fix Many, CBS 2 Investigation Finds

But as CBS 2’s Marshall Harris reported Wednesday, Goldman wasn’t going to miss another season.

“Do you know how hard it is to get a hold of Eddie Goldman?” said Bears Head Coach Matt Nagy. “It’s hard.”

One year after choosing to skip last season, Nagy knew exactly where to find run-stopper Eddie Goldman – on the field for day one of camp.

“The only regret that I do have is just the fact that my teammates went into battle without me,” Goldman said.

READ MORE: Neighbors Alarmed After Rash Of Robberies In Lakeview; Police Patrols Increased Along Southport Avenue

Goldman spent last season in California watching his team make the postseason without him.

“It really took a toll on me – especially when I watched the season; how it played out. It was a lot of anxiety. I couldn’t really enjoy it, you know, because I was so much in it – you know what I mean?” he said. “I live and die with every play.”

A Pro Bowl alternate when he last played, Goldman is hoping to hold the line after a year off. Bears teammates haven’t forgotten his impact.

“Eddie G – he look, he smile, he don’t say much – but it’s a great feeling to have that guy back on the field. A guy that knows, that can take on double teams – that’s a thousand pounds – and make it look easy and s**t,” said Bears linebacker Khalil Mack.

Goldman said he is comfortable with the COVID protocols now in place. As for whether or not a year off physically gives him an advantage or disadvantage?

MORE NEWS: Man Shot, Critically Wounded On Huron Street In River North Near Mag Mile

“I’ll determine that at the end of the season,” Goldman said.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff