Breakdown

<B>SERIES HISTORY:</B> 147th meeting. Bears have won four of past five meetings. Four of he past five games have been decided by three points, and both of last year's games went into OT.

GAME PLAN: In a meeting of two 1-5 teams, the Bears should have a big advantage in the run game, but only if Anthony Thomas is healthy. The A-Train had at least 96 rushing yards in three straight games before sitting out last week with a sprained foot, and he isn't expected to practice until at least Friday this week. But his injury isn't considered serious.

With Chris Chandler at quarterback, the Bears are more likely to throw the ball down the field, especially against a Lions defense that is 29th in average gain allowed per pass, 25th in interceptions and tied for 24th in sacks.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH: Bears PK Paul Edinger vs. Lions PK Jason Hanson. Edinger is 13-for-13 on field goals this season, while Hanson is 6-for-6. In Game 6 last season, Hanson's 48-yard FG in overtime defeated the Bears 23-20. In the rematch five weeks later, Edinger's 40-yarder beat the Lions 20-17 in overtime.

INJURY IMPACT: RB Anthony Thomas is doubtful and is not expected to play with a sprained foot.

LB Warrick Holdman is questionable with a sprained ankle and didn't practice on Wednesday.

QB Kordell Stewart is questionable with a bruised quad, but he took a few snaps on Wednesday.

WR Marty Booker is questionable and didn't practice on Wednesday with a sprained right ankle, but it is considered a mild sprain, and it appears he has a good chance to play this week.

DT Keith Traylor practiced on a limited basis Wednesday and is expected to play on Sunday.

Detroit Lions
GAME PLAN:
The Bears' defensive secondary seems to be in as much of a state of flux as the Lions', which means they might finally be able to get some receivers open. Rookie CB Charles Tillman has only three NFL starts, which might make him vulnerable to Lions veterans Az-Zahir Hakim and Bill Schroeder. Of course, the Lions could have similar problems themselves with an injury-depleted secondary in which only CB Dre' Bly has played well. The Lions need to get pressure on Bears QB Chris Chandler to protect the rest of the defensive backs.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH: Lions WR Bill Schroeder vs. Bears CB Charles Tillman. With rookie WR Charles Rogers out with a broken collarbone, Schroeder gives the Lions their best deep threat but he has to avoid the drops that have afflicted the Lions receivers all season.

Lions CB Dre' Bly vs. Bears QB Chris Chandler. Bly has been by far the Lions best player this season. He has four interceptions in two games and has scored twice -- once in an interception return and once on a fumble return. But he'll have his work cut out for him, working against the veteran Chandler.

INJURY IMPACT: The injuries to PR/KOR Eddie Drummond and P John Jett have had a major impact on the Lions. The return game, in particular, has suffered without Drummond. Reggie Swinton took over the return duties last week but was not productive. P Nick Harris is filling in for Jett and has the benefit of the special teams coverage units.


Bear Report Top Stories