We'll start our Chicago Bears injury report with the four players that have already been ruled out for the Rams game. QB Jay Cutler, LB Lance Briggs, and DT Stephen Paea all missed the week of practice, and none will play this Sunday. DT Jeremiah Ratliff has also been ruled out, but he was a limited participant in practice all week long.
Ratliff is getting closer, but I still I believe the target for him is Monday Night, December 2nd, against his former team, the Dallas Cowboys. Paea's injury is to the same toe that kept him out of a couple games earlier this season.
In better injury news, DE Shea McClellin and LS Patrick Mannelly are both listed as probable (75% chance to play), and both are expected to make their return to the lineup this week. Also listed as probable are RT Jordan Mills and nickleback Isaiah Frey
Safety Craig Steltz is listed as questionable (50% chance to play) after his concussion. The Chicago roster is only at 52 so if Steltz can't go, the Bears have the flexibility to promote one of their three practice squad defensive backs to take his spot. Another option is to promote defensive end Tracy Robertson from the PS to add a body to the D-Line rotation.
EDIT: (It appears then went with the latter)
To go along with those Bears injuries, check out this paragraph by ESPNs Michael Wright after he was asked about the Bears D taking a step back this year.
The Bears lost starting nickel corner Kelvin Hayden for the year before the season even started, then lost franchise defensive tackle Henry Melton with a torn ACL only to see his replacement, Nate Collins, lost for the season with the same injury. Two-time Pro Bowl cornerback Charles Tillman landed on the injured-reserve list due to a torn triceps suffered Nov. 10, and seven-time Pro Bowl linebacker Lance Briggs has been out the past three games with a small fracture in a shoulder. Oh, did I mention the Bears also lost starting middle linebacker D.J. Williams for the season with a torn pectoral muscle, starting defensive tackle Stephen Paea has been in and out of the lineup -- and there's a chance he could miss Sunday -- with a nagging turf toe injury and defensive end Shea McClellin missed the past two games due to a strained hamstring? So injuries have destroyed chemistry for the Bears. Considering all the defense has gone through, it's somewhat a surprise it hasn't performed more poorly.
There is one meme that captured my feelings on that paragraph and Bradley Woodrun dropped it in the Den's comment section. If you're a fan of Arrested Development, go take a peek.
For the St. Louis Rams, starting guard Harvey Dahl is listed as out, as is backup QB Brady Quinn. Starting corner Cortland Finnegan is listed as doubtful (25% chance to play). If Finnegan can't go, expect 2nd year pro Trumaine Johnson to get the start. Johnson at 6'2" is bigger than the 5'10" Finnegan, but not nearly as experienced.
They have three players receiving the probable designation, safeties Matt Giordano and Darian Stewart, and running back Chase Reynolds. All three players had full participation at Friday's practice, so I'd expect them all to be good to go.
And just in case you weren't aware, the Rams are without starting QB Sam Bradford, who was placed on injured reserve. Kellen Clemens will be making his 4th start of the year at QB, and he'll be backed up by 2nd year pro Austin Davis, who has never taken an NFL snap.
What are your thoughts on the injury report this week?
More from Windy City Gridiron:
- No controversy between Cutler and McCown
- The Bears Den: November 22, 2013 - Week 12 news & notes
- Thursday Tweets: Chicago Bears Press Conference and Practice Updates
- Chicago Bears Sackwatch 2013: Week 11 vs. Baltimore Ravens
- Chicago Bears Playbook - Jon Bostic's Steady Improvement
- Chicago Bears Fantasy Football: Start 'Em and Sit 'Em vs the Rams
- Pleased to Meet You: Week 12, St. Louis Rams