Don't look behind you

The Bears' season long injury problem continues into home finale, with the status of several players up in the air the team finished it's week of practice without their left tackle.

Mike Gandy, who is questionable with a shoulder injury, will be a game time decision but the chances are he will sit for a second straight week. If he's unable to go then rookie Qasim Mitchell will get his second career start.

Gandy isn't the only member of the offensive line that has been banged up. G Chris Villarrial has been bothered by an abdominal tear, but had a good week of practice and should start against Washington.

FS Cameron Worrell was added to the injury list Friday with a sore knee and his status is now questionable.

Tight ends Desmond Clark and John Gilmore returned to practice on Friday and have shown some improvement. Their conditions will be re-evaluated over the weekend.

"This is the type of situation where we'll be hoping that they will be back out there for us on Sunday," Coach Dick Jauron said. "They were out there today. They practiced a little, but not a lot. Clearly, they want to play, but we don't want to risk further injury. Since they would be covering passes, we want to see just how mobile they are, how much they are able to do."

Home Field Advantage
Jauron is looking forward to taking another step toward finishing the year at 8-8 and continuing their winning ways home. The Bears have a chance to go 6-2 in their first year at the new Soldier Field.

"It's something that is very important for the team, for the fans and for our sponsors," he said. "We want to establish ‘ownership' of the new stadium. This is our house, and we plan to defend it."

Jauron feels that the new building has definitely given the home team an advantage.

"When good things are happening for us out on the field the noise level is incredible," Jauron said. "That gives us a real edge toward the end of the game. Just look at what happened last week. It was really exciting. The fans can give us a great home field advantage. That's what we like so much about being back here in Chicago. Our job, obviously, is to go out there and give them something to cheer about."

One Week at a Time
Jauron has noticed an increased confidence level in quarterback Rex Grossman during the course of preparation for Washington.

"It's not a big difference, but it's definitely there," Jauron said. "Rex is a confident guy anyway, but getting the one start under his belt has helped. I think that Rex is really looking forward to this week's game against the Redskins, particularly since he was coached by Steve Spurrier when he was at Florida."

Right Move
Jauron credits quarterback coach Greg Olson for bringing along the rookie.

"He has added tremendously to our staff," Jauron said. "That position was particularly important with such a young quarterback. Greg has spent a lot of time with Rex. He's been working with him practically since the first day that Rex was signed. Just look at the results. I think it's been incredibly beneficial."


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