When the season schedule was announced, it seemed like the Chicago Bears’ bye week was coming too early, but with a few injured players benefiting from the week off it has proven to be right on time.
Both wide out Taylor Gabriel (concussion) and linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe (hamstring) are off the injury report and good to go for Sunday.
The Bears should also be getting quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (left shoulder) and defensive lineman Bilal Nichols (hand/knee) both back for this Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints.
Trubisky is officially listed as questionable, but he practiced in full all week. And in fact, he took all the first team reps all week, so unless there’s something drastic that happens between now and Sunday morning, he should be getting the start.
Nichols also received the questionable designation since he was limited toady, but he was a full participant on Wednesday and Thursday, and today was just his usual “limited” with the Bears practicing indoors on Friday. He should be back on the starting d-line, and with Akiem Hicks on injured reserve, Nichols needs to make an impact.
Offensive lineman Ted Larsen, who was limited earlier this week with a knee injury, was a full participant today and is listed as questionable. Either he or Rashaad Coward should be in line to start at right guard for the recently IR’ed Kyle Long.
It’s also interesting to note that kicker Eddy Pineiro stretched with his teammates at Halas Hall today before leaving to work out at Soldier Field.
For the Saints, it was already expected that quarterback Drew Brees would be out with a thumb injury, but they’ll also be missing running back Alvin Kamara (knee/ankle), tight end Jared Cook (ankle), wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith (ankle), and defensive end Trey Hendrickson (neck), who have all been ruled out of the game.
The Saints will be without nickelback P.J. Williams who was suspended for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.