Injury Report Analysis: Week 4

Bear Report takes a closer look at the injury report and how it could affect Sunday's outcome. The Midway Monsters are absolutely decimated on the defensive side of the ball, especially in the secondary, which is bad news facing a Detroit passing attack ranked No. 1 in the NFL.

Chicago Bears Injury Status
CB Nathan Vasher Groin Doubtful
S Adam Archuleta Hand Questionable
LB Lance Briggs Hamstring Questionable
OG Ruben Brown Ankle Questionable
DT Tommie Harris Knee Questionable
OT Fred Miller Knee Questionable
CB Charles Tillman Ankle Questionable
DE Adewale Ogunleye Hip Probable
RB Adrian Peterson Calf Probable
LB Brian Urlacher Back Probable
DT Darwin Walker Knee Probable

Detroit Lions Injury Status
LB Anthony Cannon Quad Out
RB T.J. Duckett Ankle Out
LB Alex Lewis Hamstring Out
OT Jeff Backus Rib Questionable
DE Kalimba Edwards Ankle Questionable
WR Calvin Johnson Back Questionable
OG Damien Woody Rib Questionable

For the Bears, the following players did not take part in practice Friday: Vasher, Briggs, Tillman, and Urlacher. Archuleta, Brown, Harris, and Miller were only able to participate on a limited basis, but Ogunleye, Peterson, and Walker participated in all drills and should be active Sunday in Detroit.

As for the Lions, Cannon, Duckett, Lewis, Edwards, and Johnson were all held out of practice Friday, although there is still hope that both Edwards and Johnson will be able to give it a go come game day at Ford Field. Backus and Woody only participated on a limited basis.

Bears on Offense
The Monsters of the Midway will be dealing with their biggest change on offense in two seasons, but injuries have nothing to do with it. Head coach Lovie Smith simply could not take any more turnovers – the team has committed a league-high 11 in three games – and has demoted quarterback Rex Grossman in favor of Brian Griese. While Grossman has taken the majority of the blame in the media both locally and nationally for an offense currently ranked 30th in the NFL, his receivers have dropped passes and run bad routes, the tailbacks keep putting the ball on the ground, and an experienced offensive line has been thoroughly outplayed so far.

OG Ruben Brown
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
It would be great if Griese could just take care of the football and put his defense and special teams in position to win this game, but that won't be the case since Detroit has a high-powered attack anxious to exploit a banged-up Chicago defense. Losing Brown, a nine-time Pro Bowler, would be a big blow since Terrence Metcalf is nothing more than a career backup at this point, but he's expected to play and needs to start opening up some holes for Cedric Benson on the ground. Griese will be facing the 31st-ranked pass defense Sunday, but Benson and the running game have to find a rhythm soon if the offense is going to turn it around this season.

Look for the Bears to feature a heavy dose of both Benson and Peterson, who could see more time in the backfield given Benson's recent fumble problems, early and often in order to control the clock and keep Detroit's offense on the sideline.

Bears on Defense
Detroit offensive coordinator Mike Martz never needs an excuse to throw the ball all over the field, but with both Tillman and Vasher most likely out of the line up and S Mike Brown already lost for the year, QB Jon Kitna will be pulling the trigger with regularity Sunday. Rookie defensive backs Trumaine McBride, Corey Graham, and Kevin Payne will all be on the field much more than the Bears truly want at this point in their respective careers, and they'll be asked to defend one of the deepest and most talented groups of receivers in the league. Johnson, the No. 2-overall selection in this past April's draft, will be a gametime decision with a bad back, but Kitna still has plenty of capable targets even without him in Roy Williams, Mike Furrey, and Shaun McDonald.

LB Lance Briggs
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
As for the front seven, Harris is not expected to play even though he did get some work done at Halas Hall on Friday. If he isn't able to go, Walker slides over from nose tackle to Harris' three-technique position and Anthony Adams, who was inactive in Week 1 after coming to Chicago as a free agent from San Francisco, starts for the first time in a Bears uniform. Briggs will give it a go because the team simply can't afford any more absences right now, and Archuleta is currently sporting a cast on his broken right hand.

Expect the Bears to play a ton of zone coverage against the Lions because they don't have enough firepower to match up one-on-one with a thoroughbred like Williams or a pest like Furrey, and they'll also have to employ the nickel package more than they would like since Detroit features so many three- and four-receiver sets in the passing game.

John Crist is the Editor in Chief of and a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. To read him every day, visit and become a Chicago Bears insider.

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