Description: The Bears have decided not to pursue Devin Hester in free agency. SOURCE: NFL Network
Insight: Hester never cut it as a receiver and it looks like he's going to be used exclusively on special teams wherever he ends up. Despite being arguably the greatest return man in NFL history, Hester isn't a fantasy option.
Description: Quarterback Jay Cutler will remain with the Bears after agreeing to a seven-year deal.
Insight: Cutler averaged 238.3 ypg his highest total since leaving Denver in 2008. With Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffery, Martellus Bennett and Matt Forte catching his passes, Cutler should continue to be a productive fantasy option.
Description: Chicago receiver Earl Bennett isn't expected to play Sunday against Green Bay. SOURCE: Brad Biggs, Chicago Tribune
Insight: He's been away from the team for almost a week while dealing with an undisclosed personal matter. Jay Cutler still has Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall to throw to so Bennett's absence shouldn't alter Chicago's game plan too much in Week 17.
Description: Chicago QB Jay Cutler will start next week's game versus the Packers despite a lackluster outing in Week 16. SOURCE: ESPN Chicago
Insight: Cutler threw for 222 yards and a 73.8 QB rating before being replaced by Josh McCown in the fourth quarter. Cutler hasn't played the Packers yet this season (he was hurt for Week 9) but he threw five interceptions against them in two starts last season.
Description: Bears running back Matt Forte needs just 39 rushing yards over the final two games to set a career high.
Insight: Forte already has a career-high 66 catches and is 26 receiving yards away from setting a career high in that category as well. He also has nine total touchdowns, his most since 2010. It's been a fantastic season for Forte in his first year under offensive mastermind Marc Trestman.
Description: Bears quarterback Jay Cutler completed 22-of-31 for 265 yards, three touchdowns and two picks in his return to action Sunday at Cleveland.
Insight: Cutler was wild early and threw two interceptions on high throws to Brandon Marshall, but he came through for fantasy owners who took the chance and started him. He had a little help from Alshon Jeffery, who somehow pulled in an underthrown 45-yard pass in double coverage for a touchdown.
Description: Bears coach Marc Trestman says Jay Cutler (ankle) will start Sunday against the Browns.
Insight: Backup Josh McCown has thrown for at least 348 yards in each of the last three games but Trestman said Cutler is still the starter. Cutler has a 13-8 TD-INT ratio this season compared to 13-1 for McCown. Either QB is a top-10 fantasy play with Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery at wideout.
Description: According to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune, Bears coach Marc Trestman says he is "optimistic" Jay Cutler (ankle) will start Sunday against the Browns. Cutler was cleared to practice at full speed Wednesday.
Insight: Backup Josh McCown has thrown for at least 348 yards in each of the last three games with nine touchdowns (eight passing) and two turnovers during that stretch, but Trestman said Cutler is still the starter. Cutler has a 13-8 TD-INT ratio, compared to 13-1 for McCown.
Description: Despite another fine performance from backup Josh McCown on Monday night, Bears coach Marc Trestman insists Jay Cutler is still the team's starter when healthy. SOURCE: ESPN Chicago
Insight: McCown has been terrific for the Bears, compiling a 109.8 quarterback rating in seven contests. Cutler, meanwhile, is still waiting to be cleared after missing the last four games with an ankle injury.
Description: Bears QB Jay Cutler (ankle) has yet to be cleared to practice, according to the quarterback.
Insight: Josh McCown has been more than adequate as a fill in and the Bears may not rush Cutler back into the lineup if he's not 100 percent. That's not a problem if Cutler's fantasy owners had the two handcuffed. Either QB should have a good day against Dallas who has given up an average of 294.9 ypg in the air this season.
Description: Bears wideout Alshon Jeffery was unstoppable Sunday at Minnesota, catching 12 balls for 249 yards and two touchdowns.
Insight: Jeffery beat Brandon Marshall to 1,000 yards despite being 85 yards behind him when the game began. The second-year wideout has reeled in 70 passes for 1,109 yards and five touchdowns on 118 targets this season while averaging 111.67 receiving yards per game over his last nine.
Description: Bears QB Jay Cutler (ankle) said he would be "pretty disappointed" if he wasn't able to play in Week 14, according to Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune.
Insight: Josh McCown will draw his fourth start of the season Sunday at Minnesota, but Cutler is targeting Monday, Dec. 9 against the Cowboys for his return. He suffered a high-ankle sprain in Week 9 at Detroit and has not been fully healthy since Oct. 10 versus the New York Giants.
Description: Bears backup QB Josh McCown will start again in Week 12 against the St. Louis Rams with Jay Cutler already having been ruled out due to an ankle injury.
Insight: McCown has won both his starts this season, but knows there is no QB controversy and that when healthy Cutler is the starter. He's face a tough Rams pass rush Sunday. McCown has been more balanced in his targeting Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery than Cutler.
Description: Chicago tight end Martellus Bennett (ankle) is active Sunday against the Ravens.
Insight: Bennett has been banged up this season but hasn't missed any time. However, his production has waned over the last three weeks and the Ravens have shut down opposing tight ends over the last four games. He's a low-end TE1.
Description: Chicago QB Jay Cutler is week-to-week with a left high ankle sprain. SOURCE: Rich Campbell, Chicago Tribune
Insight: Cutler suffered the injury in his first game back from a groin tear Sunday against the Lions. He's been ruled out for Week 11 and almost certainly will miss Week 12. Josh McCown will start until Cutler returns.
Description: Chicago QB Jay Cutler came out in the fourth quarter Sunday against Detroit after suffering an ankle injury and is expected to miss next week's game against Baltimore, according to beat writer Rich Campbell.
Insight: Josh McCown will be asked start once again. Cutler, just back from a groin injury, should be considered doubtful for Week 12 too.
Description: Chicago cornerback Charles "Peanut" Tillman has been placed on injured reserve/designated to return which will end his regular season.
Insight: Tillman has a triceps injury. He can start practicing again in six weeks and play in eight which would make him eligible if the Bears can make the playoffs. He's one of the league's best at stripping ball carriers and receivers of the ball.
Description: Chicago wideout Brandon Marshall went off for 139 yards and two touchdowns Sunday in a 21-19 loss to the Lions.
Insight: The return of Jay Cutler to the starting lineup certainly seemed to help. With seven games remaining on the schedule, Marshall should easily eclipse his career-high in touchdowns (11) as long as he stays healthy.
Description: Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (groin) will start Sunday against the Lions, according to ESPN Chicago's Jeff Dickerson.
Insight: Cutler was given a timetable of at least four weeks when he suffered a groin injury in Week 7, but he's ready to go after three. "He's been cleared because the doctors believe he can do everything," coach Marc Trestman said. Cutler threw for 317 yards, two touchdowns and three picks in Week 4 at Detroit.
Description: Chicago cornerback Charles "Peanut" Tillman is probable for Monday's game against Green Bay with a sore knee.
Insight: Tillman has been playing through the injury over the past two weeks and should be ready for the division rival Packers. He's one of the best at stripping ball carriers and receivers of the ball with 10 forced fumbles last season. He has two forced fumbles and three INTs in 2013. He must play if the Bears are to control Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay passing game.
Description: Bears linebacker Lance Briggs (shoulder) is still 2-4 weeks away from returning based on the original 4-6 week timetable.
Insight: Briggs suffered a shoulder fracture in a Week 7 loss to the Redskins. He claims he's ahead of schedule. The seven-time Pro Bowler's absence hurts a defense that has always been a favorite of fantasy owners for its ability to score touchdowns.
Description: Bears safety Major Wright is questionable for Monday's game against Green Bay with a knee injury.
Insight: When facing Aaron Rodgers its always best to have as many healthy defensive backs as possible. Even with Randall Cobb sidelined and James Jones questionable Rodgers figures to throw the ball 30-35 times.
Description: According to ESPNChicago.com, there has been "an increased sense of optimism" that Bears QB Jay Cutler (groin) will be able to return sooner than his initial timetable.
Insight: Cutler tore a groin muscle in Week 7 against the Redskins and was expected to miss at least four weeks, but he could be back as soon as Week 10 against the Lions. Josh McCown will start Monday night against the Packers.
Description: NBC's Pro Football Talk is reporting that Bears linebacker Lance Briggs (shoulder) will miss 4-6 weeks.
Insight: Briggs suffered a shoulder fracture in Sunday's loss to the Redskins. The seven-time Pro Bowler inherited signal calling duties from Brian Urlacher when he retired last season. Briggs' absence hurts a defense that has always been a favorite of fantasy owners for its ability to score touchdowns.
Description: Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler has a torn groin and will miss at least four weeks. SOURCE: Jay Glazer, Fox Sports
Insight: Cutler suffered the injury on a sack in the second quarter Sunday against Washington. Josh McCown is expected to start when the Bears come back from their bye week. Although McCown held his own against the Redskins (14-for-20, 204 yards, TD), this isn't good news for Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffrey owners.
Description: Bears quarterback Jay Cutler will have an MRI on his groin, according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.
Insight: Cutler suffered an injury on a sack in the second quarter and didn't return. He was replaced by backup Josh McCown. The Bears have a bye in Week 8 so Cutler has some extra time to get healthy.
Description: Bears backup QB Josh McCown completed 14-of-20 for 204 yards and a touchdown in relief of Jay Cutler (groin) Sunday against the Redskins.
Insight: McCown was able to get the ball to Alshon Jeffery (four catches, 105 yards) and Brandon Marshall (6-75) while hitting Martellus Bennett for a fourth-quarter TD. The Bears have a bye in Week 8 but if McCown has to play in Week 9 at Green Bay fantasy owners will still be able to use Chicago's skill-position players.
Description: Chicago tight end Martellus Bennett (knee) did not practice Wednesday.
Insight: Bennett suffered a knee injury in Week 5 but was able to play four days later last Thursday against the Giants and had six catches. He should be able to play in Week 7 against the Redskins and is a top-10 tight end option.
Description: Houston strong safety Danieal Manning is expected to sit out 6-8 weeks with a hairline fracture in his right leg. SOURCE: Jerome Solomon, Houston Chronicle
Insight: The Texans didn't need this on top of their already disappointing 2-4 start. They head to Arrowhead in Week 7 with Eddie Pleasant and rookie D.J. Swearinger as candidates to start in Manning's place.
Description: Bears linebacker D.J. Williams will miss the rest of the season with a torn left pectoral muscle.
Insight: The Bears defense has been crushed by injuries this season. Chicago lost defensive tackles Henry Melton and Nate Collins to torn ACLs, DT Stephen Paea has missed games with a sprained toe, Charles Tillman has been dealing with nagging injuries all season and now Williams is done for the year. Chicago does have a bye in Week 9 after playing Thursday against the Giants, so they'll only have one game between now and Nov. 4.
Description: Chicago tight end Martellus Bennett (knee) is active for Thursday's game against the Giants.
Insight: Bennett's knee injury isn't considered serious but the quick turnaround from Sunday's game put his status in question. He has a great matchup Thursday and fantasy owners can roll with him as a top-12 tight end against his former team.
Description: Chicago tight end Martellus Bennett (knee) is headed for a game-time call Thursday against New York. SOURCE: ESPN Chicago
Insight: The short turnaround after Sunday's loss to New Orleans certainly doesn't make things easy for Bennett's fantasy owners. If Bennett can play through the pain, he should be good for at least a touchdown against the hapless Giants.
Description: Bears wideout Alshon Jeffery had a career game Sunday against the Saints, catching 10 balls for 218 yards and a touchdown.
Insight: Jay Cutler targeted Jeffery 13 times, seven more than any other Bears player. Brandon Marshall has been blanketed by opposing defenses in recent weeks, but the emergence of Jeffery as a dangerous weapon should open things up for Marshall going forward.
Description: Bears quarterback Jay Cutler had to play from behind for a second straight week Sunday against the Saints and finished with 358 yards and two touchdowns.
Insight: The Bears have fallen behind big in two straight weeks and Cutler has averaged 337.5 passing yards while throwing four touchdown passes. He has 10 TD passes in five games this season and has a favorable matchup Thursday against the Giants.
Description: Bears wideout Alshon Jeffery blew up for 107 yards on five catches Sunday in a loss to the Lions.
Insight: Teams seem to be keying in on Brandon Marshall, which usually leaves Jeffery wide open. Jeffery has also shown that he can be a dangerous runner with 57 yards on just three carries this season. He could make for an interesting flex option going forward.
Description: Bears receiver Brandon Marshall (back) practiced in full Friday, according to Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune.
Insight: Marshall left Thursday's practice with back tightness, but the fact that he was able to return to a full practice already on Friday is a sign that he'll start Sunday night against the Steelers.
Description: Bears TE Martellus Bennett pulled in seven passes for 76 yards and two touchdowns Sunday against Minnesota, but also came out of the game with a sore shoulder.
Insight: Bennett is expected to play in Week 3. He already has three touchdowns in two games after scoring five all last year. QB Jay Cutler should continue to look his way in the red zone and he's a viable target after Brandon Marshall and Matt Forte.
Description: Bears receiver Brandon Marshall had eight receptions, 104 yards and a touchdown on 10 targets against the Bengals Sunday in the season opener.
Insight: This is a stat line fantasy owners should get used to. Jay Cutler spread the ball around more, targeting Martellus Bennett and Matt Forte six times apiece and Alshon Jeffery eight times, but Marshall is still his top guy and a bona fide WR1.
Description: Against a tough Bengals defensive front, Matt Forte was held to 50 yards on 19 carries but he scored a touchdown and caught four passes for 41 yards.
Insight: The Bears kept Forte in on the goal line for a one-yard touchdown and also gave it to him on a fourth-and-one and he converted. Michael Bush had six carries for 15 yards. New coach Marc Trestman should get a career year out of Forte.
Description: Bears GM Phil Emery said that in WR Brandon Marshall (hip), he sees "a guy that is better than he was last year," according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.
Insight: Marshall has been dealing with some minor issues related to his hip surgery but he'll be a full go for Week 1. While we think he'll be one of the top receivers in football, it is going to be difficult to top his lofty receiving totals of 118 receptions, 1,508 yards and 11 touchdowns last season.
Description: Bears receiver Brandon Marshall (hip) confirmed on his Twitter account that he'll play Week 1.
Insight: Marshall has been practicing nearly every day and playing in preseason games, but he admitted to not being comfortable coming off his third hip surgery. Even if he's behind where he wants to be, he should be ready to post WR1 numbers come Week 1.
Description: Bears receiver Brandon Marshall said he still isn't feeling comfortable with his hip, seven months after his surgery, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. "It's one of those things where I'm just trying to get healthy for Week 1," Marshall said Tuesday. "So you've got to have a game plan coming off surgery, a third hip surgery. So yeah, I’m not where I want to be right now. It’s a little frustrating. But we'll see."
Insight: Marshall has been practicing nearly every day and playing in preseason games, but he said his conditioning has been an issue. The regular season starts in less than two weeks so this news is worrisome. Still, we expect Marshall to be ready to post WR1 numbers even if he's slightly behind where he wants to be.
Description: Chicago receiver Alshon Jeffery caught seven balls for 77 yards against Oakland on Friday night.
Insight: The second-year wideout appears to be gaining the confidence of quarterback Jay Cutler and the coaching staff. He could take a big step forward if he can stay healthy as opposing defenses are designed to stop Brandon Marshall and Matt Forte.
Description: According to the Chicago Sun-Times, one of the reasons the Bears chose to fire Lovie Smith was his "underutilization" of running back Matt Forte.
Insight: New coach Marc Trestman's offense involved heavy usage of the running back in the passing game. "I’m just excited about getting back to getting out of the backfield and running routes and catching balls. Not just running the ball, but getting the ball out in space," Forte said. "It’s a different way of running the ball. After you catch it, you’ve got to run with it. So instead of handing it off, you get the ball out in space, and that gives you more opportunity to make big plays."
Description: According to the Chicago Sun-Times, in new Bears coach Marc Trestman's 10 NFL seasons as an offensive coordinator or quarterbacks coach, his lead back averaged 65 catches per season.
Insight: "In this offense," Bears running back Matt Forte said, "the running back runs a lot of routes and is able to catch the ball a lot. I’m able to catch the ball; I’m willing to catch it. I expect a lot out of myself. I’m looking for a big year for our team as a whole, as well as an explosive offense." Forte had a career-low 44 catches last season. He should be back above 60 this year for the first time since his rookie year.
Description: Bears wideout Brandon Marshall, who underwent hip surgery in January, has been cleared to resume on-field activities.
Insight: The news came directly from Marshall's personal Twitter account. Marshall was reunited with Jay Cutler in 2012 and caught 118 passes for 1,508 yards and 11 touchdowns, all of which were career highs. He should easily top 100 catches again in 2013.
Description: Linebacker Brian Urlacher has retired from the NFL after 13 seasons with the Bears.
Insight: The future Hall of Fame linebacker might be convinced to play if an opportunity opens up during the season, but at this point in his career he's not the factor he once was. In 13 seasons he amassed 1,229 tackles, 41.5 sacks, 22 INTs and 12 FF.
Description: Bears wideout Brandon Marshall, who underwent hip surgery in January, is reportedly running again, according to a Chicago Sun-Times report.
Insight: Marshall set career highs in catches (113), receiving yards (1,466) and touchdowns (11) in 2012. He has had similar procedures on both hips in the past so this shouldn't be a problem going into next season. He's currently the third receiver off the board in mock drafts at fantasyfootballcalculator.com (behind Calvin Johnson and A.J. Green).
Description: Bears wideout Devin Hester will apparently return to his role as a return specialist, according to the Chicago Sun-Times report.
Insight: Hester had 23 catches for 242 yards and a touchdown last season and even at his best was never better than a No. 3 fantasy wideout. He has returned five kickoffs and 12 punts for touchdowns in his career.
Description: Linebacker Brian Urlacher called the one-year, $2 million offer he received from the Bears a "slap in the face" Thursday on Mike and Mike in the Morning.
Insight: Urlacher was hoping to get something in the $3.5 to 4 million range. He's hoping to play at least one more season but if he doesn't get an offer to his liking it's possible that Urlacher could simply call it a career.
Description: The Bears have announced that they are moving on from linebacker Brian Urlacher after they were unable to agree on a new contract.
Insight: The Bears tweeted that "both sides will move forward." The linebacker finishes his Bears career with 1,362 total tackles (1,047 solo), 41.5 sacks, 22 interceptions, 12 forced fumbles and four touchdowns.
Description: The Vikings are keeping tabs on free agent linebacker Brian Urlacher.
Insight: This report comes via the Chicago Tribune. Even at age 34, Urlacher managed to have a pretty productive season in 2012, collecting 68 tackles in 12 games. Heading to a divisional rival late in his career would be very Brett Favre-esque of Urlacher but the feeling around the league is that he'll probably wind up back in Chicago.
Description: According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Bears have reached an agreement on a four-year deal with tight end Martellus Bennett.
Insight: Bennett caught 55 passes for 626 yards and five touchdowns for New York last season. Chicago hasn't used its tight ends much in the offense since Greg Olsen left but that's likely due to its personnel at that position and issues on the offensive line that forced tight ends to pass block.
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