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Injury Update: Bears to play without key linemen


Updated 12/28 - 1:45 pm

The Bears will be shorthanded on both their offensive and defensive lines Sunday when they close the season by visiting the Vikings in Minnesota.

Defensive tackle Akiem Hicks (elbow) and nose tackle Eddie Goldman (concussion) have been ruled out of the game as has right guard Rashaad Coward (knee). Right tackle Bobby Massie (ankle) is doubtful.

The Bears have also ruled out receiver Taylor Gabriel, who will miss his fifth straight game after suffering his second concussion of the season. Cornerback Prince Amukamara (hamstring) is questionable after being limited in practice Friday.

For the Vikings, running back Dalvin Cook (shoulder) and linebacker Eric Kendricks (quad) have been ruled out. Cornerback Mackensie Alexander (knee), safety Jayron Kearse (foot) and running back Alexander Mattison (ankle) are questionable.

One more chance: With the Bears practicing Friday for the final time this season, coach Matt Nagy said that his message to his players centered on "opportunities."

"You never know when they come and go," Nagy said. "We know that we have one more. You never know when it's going to be the last one.

"I just thanked the guys for the efforts that they've given and then just like today, both our look teams–offensive and defensive look teams helping out both other sides–did a good job all year long. Sometimes that can be a thankless job; they're out there doing different things and you feel like coaches aren't watching you, but we are. So, to everybody else: we have one more chance. Let's go do whatever we can to win."

Not satisfied at all: It's no surprise that improving the offense will be a top offseason priority. The Bears enter Week 17 ranked 30th in the NFL in scoring (17.3 points per game) and 29th in total yards (294.1 per game).

"Where we ended up being this year with this offense, we all understand, players and coaches, that you can't have that," Nagy said. "We know that. We're not satisfied at all. We know we've got to be a lot better, and we can be. So, again, the solution side of it, of trying to figure out the 'why' parts, is where we're at. So, the second the season ends and we are officially in the 2020 season, that's going to be one of the main priorities [for] us, is trying to get that fixed. So there's a lot of things involved in that."

Tougher conversations: Nagy knows that his discussions with general manager Ryan Pace after the 2019 season won't be the same as they were following last year's 12-4 campaign.

"They're naturally going to be different because of the scenario of where we're at," Nagy said. "It was a lot easier last year going [through] what we went through and ending up making it to the playoffs, winning the division. We felt like we set the foundation last year, so those conversations are easier.

"And then when you go into a year like this, and you have all those expectations and those intentions and you don't reach them, you're going to have tougher conversations. That's where I go back to the relationship of honesty, putting egos aside and doing what's best. I don't foresee it being any tougher between us."

The Bears hit the practice field Friday at Halas Hall for practice as they prepare for Sunday's game against the Vikings in Minnesota.

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