Bears

Sick bay: Bears get starters Bushrod, Jeffery part of the way back

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Sick bay: Bears get starters Bushrod, Jeffery part of the way back

Game day is still some time off and the vagaries of health at the NFL levels so positives regarding injuries on Wednesday guarantee precious little by the time inactives are announced 90 minutes before game times on Sundays. But the Bears got two key offensive starters back at least in a meaningful limited way on Wednesday, more than they’ve had for the past handful of games.

Left tackle Jermon Bushrod was cleared under the NFL’s concussion protocol and returned to practice after missing both the Oakland and Kansas City games. Wide receiver Alshon Jeffery, one of the more enigmatic injury siturations for the Bears this season, also was able to practice on a limited basis.

[SHOP: Gear up Bears fans!]

On the downside were linebacker Shea McClellin (knee) and safety Antrel Rolle (ankle) who were unable to practice. Receiver Eddie Royal (ankle) remained sidelined after missing the Kansas City game.

Christian Jones did a commendable job filling in calling signals after McClellin as forced to leave the Kansas City game. But “it's an adjustment,” defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said. “When Shea went out the other day, our operation struggled during the game, and there were some plays that not everybody was on the same page and it was because of that,

[MORE: Bears watching Kyle Fuller grow up]

“That's one of the things that Shea has brought to us and that's good quarterbacking of the defense, and when he went out, we struggled with that. In defense of Christian, he hadn't had to do that many time before and then we had to bring in LaRoy [Reynolds], who's never played for us, never in camp, never in the off-season and he was put in a tough situation, much like Harold [Jones-Quartey, safety] the week before. After a week of practice hopefully those guys wil play better and do their jobs better.”

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Who deserves the blame in the Bears loss to Miami?

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Who deserves the blame in the Bears loss to Miami?

David Haugh, Adam Jahns and Patrick Finley join Kap on the panel. The Bears lose a rough one in Miami as Matt Nagy goes conservative at the end zone. Does the rookie coach deserve all of the blame? Dave Wannstedt joins the guys to discuss.

Plus the guys discuss the Cubs’ newest hitting coach/scapegoat, Brandon Saad’s upcoming healthy scratch and Bobby Portis betting on himself this season. 

Listen here or in the embedded player below!

Akiem Hicks makes Pro Football Focus Team of the Week after strong game against Dolphins

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USA TODAY

Akiem Hicks makes Pro Football Focus Team of the Week after strong game against Dolphins

The Bears defense was not its usual self in their overtime loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday. The pass rush was minimal and tackling looked optional, and Brock Osweiler threw for almost 400 yards.

There was plenty of blame to go around, but a few individual defenders had success while their teammates struggled.

Defensive lineman Akiem Hicks made the Pro Football Focus Team of the Week for Week 6 with a 92.2 overall grade.

He recorded seven tackles that resulted in a defensive “stop,” the most of any defensive lineman according to PFF.

Chicago’s next highest-graded player was cornerback Kyle Fuller (78.2), who intercepted Osweiler twice but also missed two tackles.

Offensively, wide receiver Taylor Gabriel led the way with a 76.9 mark. PFF credited four of his five catches coming against Dolphins cornerback Torry McTyer in coverage.

Meanwhile, outside linebacker Khalil Mack had the lowest-graded game of his career (47.8), while linebacker Danny Trevathan (29.9) and safety Adrian Amos Jr. (47.5) each had their second-worst games.

Some of the Bears’ best players were at their worst in Miami. They’re going to need to get their act together for the New England Patriots on Sunday.