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Pace will be a back-up for rest of the season

12/17/2009

By JEFF DICKERSON

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Orlando Pace knew last week his days as the Bears starting left tackle were over. According to a league source, Pace wanted to play against the Packers, but was gently told "no" by the coaching staff, even though his groin injury was no longer an issue.

Despite practicing on Wednesday, Pace will be a back-up for the remainder of the season, as the Bears will stick with Chris Williams at left tackle and Kevin Shaffer at right tackle, according to the source.

The Chicago Tribune reported Pace ran with the second team during Wednesday's practice.

Williams' struggles versus Green Bay were well documented, but Shaffer is said to have performed well. The Bears would catch a big break if Shaffer can handle right tackle duties in 2010, since other areas of the offensive line are in need of major improvements.