Should the bearded wizard not play Monday night against the Bears, quarterback Jay Cutler will notice.
Cutler has his eye on safety Eric Weddle, knowing full well that the game plan will be altered if the Pro Bowl (and All Pro) veteran is on the field.
"With Weddle playing, they're a little bit of different animal; they have the ability to check when you check," Cutler said Wednesday. “He's a smart player. He makes really smart decisions. He plays the ball well. He's good in the box. It's well-deserved, some of the praise he receives.”
Significant praise coming from Cutler, who is in his 10th season in the NFL.
Weddle, battling a groin injury, has missed the past two games (both losses for the Chargers, who will be looking to avoid their fifth consecutive loss Monday night). Although he’s practiced this week, Weddle has been limited, and he’s listed as “questionable” to play against the Bears.
No one would blame the soon-to-be-free agent – who is clearly not even close to 100-percent and has swelling and bruising all along his thigh – for sitting out the Bears game and taking the following bye week to recover. It would behoove him, actually.
t’s just not his style.
“My guys need me,” Weddle said earlier this week. “If I can go, I’ll go. I'm doing everything I can to get back out there for my guys and help them get a win."
If Weddle is inactive, expect to see Jimmy Wilson and Jahleel Addae platooning in his place.
Besides Weddle, DE Corey Liuget, DB Darrell Stuckey, CB Jason Verrett and CB Patrick Robinson are listed as questionable. Guard Orlando Franklin and TE Ladarius Green and listed as doubtful; TE Antonio Gates and CB Brandon Flowers are listed as probable.
Left tackle King Dunlap, ILB Denzel Perryman, ILB Manti Te’o, and C Chris Watt have been ruled out for the game.