Neither the Chicago Bears nor the Green Bay Packers will be heading into Soldier Field at full strength on Sunday, as each squad has several key performers on injured reserve, and today’s injury report just highlights even more the importance for quality depth in the NFL.
Of course the big story line this Sunday is Chicago quarterback Justin Fields squaring off for the first time across from future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers, but the team that can overcome their injuries, and capitalize on their opponents injured players, may be the one that comes out on top.
Here’s how the Bears list their final injury report.
- J.P. Holtz, TE (Quad) Out
- Caleb Johnson, LB (Knee) Out
- Akiem Hicks, DL (Groin) Questionable
- Khalil Mack, OLB (Foot) Questionable
- Xavier Crawford, DB (Back) Questionable
- Duke Shelley, NB (Ankle) Questionable
- Artie Burns, CB (Foot) Questionable
- Eddie Jackson, S (Knee) Questionable
- Joel Iyiegbuniwe, ILB (Hamstring) Questionable
- Allen Robinson II, WR (Ankle) Questionable
- Jakeem Grant Sr., WR/KR/PR (Groin) Questionable
- Ryan Nall, RB (Ankle) Questionable
All the questionable Bears practiced in full today except Hicks, Robinson, and Grant who were all limited, and Mack, who was held out entirely. But of these four I’m most confident in Mack suiting up on Sunday. The Bears haven’t given any indication that he’s not going to play, and there wasn’t an additional injury suffered last week against the Raiders.
Grant will likely go as he was limited the last two days, but Hicks and A-Rob missed all week except Friday. Hicks was doubtful last Friday before being downgraded to out on Saturday, so him being questionable is progress.
If the Bears make any changes to the injury report we’ll update this article accordingly.
Running back Damien Williams is on the Reserve/COVID-19 list, maening he’s likely out for Sunday too, so expect a heavy dose of rookie Khalil Herbert on Sunday. Ryan Nall could see his snaps increase as well, especially in passing situations if the Bears don’t completely trust their first year tailback with all the blitz pickups. Practice squad running back Artavis Pierce will likely be a COVID call up for Sunday’s game.
The Bears will be shorthanded in the coaching ranks on Sunday too, as wide receivers coach Mike Furrey tested positive for COVID-19.
Also, don’t forget the Bears placed starting right tackle Germain Ifedi and reserve outside linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu on injured reserve this week. Look for Elijah Wilkinson to start at right tackle and Trevis Gipson to be the first outside linebacker off the bench.
Here’s how the Packers list Friday’s injury report.
- Kevin King, CB (Shoulder) Out
- Dennis Kelley, T (Back)
- Elgton Jenkins, G (Ankle) Questionable
- Malik Taylor, WR (Illness)
QuestionableMoved to the Reserve/COVID-19 list
Jenkins, who is one of their starters, has missed the last three games and the Packers are calling him a game time decision after being a limited participant at practice all week.
Green Bay will also be missing their number one corner Jaire Alexander, their top pass rusher Za’Darius Smith, wide out Marquez Valdes-Scantling, all of whom are on injured reserve, and left tackle David Bakhtiari is still on the PUP list.
I elaborate on the injury list in my latest T Formation Conversation Podcast here.