Quarterback Nick Foles will try to lead the Chicago Bears to their first win in a month when he makes his first start of 2021 on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field.
Foles is starting because Justin Fields is recovering from an ankle injury, and Andy Dalton is out with a groin injury.
The Bears elevated rookie quarterback Ryan Willis from the practice squad Saturday, and he potentially could be Foles’ backup if the Bears decide to make Fields inactive. Bears coach Matt Nagy said they were weighing Willis’ preparedness against whether Fields would be OK to play in an emergency.
Foles hasn’t played in a regular-season game since 2020 when he went 2-5 as the Bears starter, throwing 10 touchdown passes and eight interceptions. He injured his hip and glute against the Minnesota Vikings on Nov. 16, 2020, the Bears turned back to Mitch Trubisky and Foles didn’t start again.
Aside from Fields and Dalton being out, the Bears enter Sunday with nine players still on the reserve/COVID-19 list: defensive lineman Akiem Hicks, wide receivers Allen Robinson and Isaiah Coulter, safety Tashuan Gipson, cornerback Jaylon Johnson, tight ends Jesse James and Jesper Horsted, inside linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe and running back Ryan Nall.
Both teams have had their share of recent struggles.
The Bears have won one game since Oct. 10 — a 16-14 win over the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving — and were eliminated from playoff contention Monday night.
The Seahawks have lost four of their last six and are coming off a 20-10 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in which quarterback Russell Wilson completed 17 of 31 passes for 156 yards with no touchdowns, one interception and three sacks.
The Bears declared out Dalton, cornerback Xavier Crawford, wide receiver/returner Jakeem Grant and left tackle Jason Peters.
Fields, wide receiver Marquise Goodwin (foot) and nose tackle Eddie Goldman (finger) are questionable.
On Saturday, the Bears activated cornerback Duke Shelley from injured reserve and elevated five players from the practice squad — Willis, linebacker Ledarius Mack, wide receiver Dazz Newsome, defensive back Dee Virgin and wide receiver Nsimba Webster.
The Seahawks declared out linebacker Jon Rhattigan (knee) and listed cornerback Bless Austin (hip/personal) as questionable.
Miss anything this week? Catch up before kickoff (3:05 p.m., FOX).
- 5 things to watch for as the Bears travel to play the Seahawks, including Robert Quinn’s hunt for a franchise record, Nick Foles’ 1st start in more than a year — plus our Week 16 predictions
- Column: The Bears made a full effort to acquire Russell Wilson in the offseason. Would they — and Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy — be better off if the deal was made?
- Germain Ifedi’s angry reaction to a personal foul on Bears rookie Teven Jenkins came with a message: ‘Do it the clean way.’
- ‘Locked in’: As he pursues a 1,000-yard season, Bears receiver Darnell Mooney is setting a tone and building a special connection with Justin Fields
- Bears Q&A: Why doesn’t the organization care as much as the fan base? Where does German Ifedi come off shoving Teven Jenkins? And will Thomas Graham Jr. see more action after an impressive debut?
- Chicago sports in 2021: A look back at the biggest stories of the year
- Column: How will we remember the 2021 sports world? It was one for the books, with plenty of COVID-19 concerns and moments that won’t be forgotten.
- The Arlington Heights Bears? Here’s what to know about the team’s possible move from Chicago’s Soldier Field.
Source: Berkshire mont