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Thursday, November 4, 2010
Rest suited Briggs, Urlacher well

By Jeff Dickerson

Lance Briggs
Lance Briggs stayed local during the Bears' bye week to get treatment on his sprained left ankle.
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Perhaps no group needed an off week more than the Chicago Bears linebackers.

"It helped a lot," Lance Briggs said Thursday. "I thought about beaches and nice things while I was sitting in the training room."

While some of his teammates jetted off to warm locations across the country, Briggs showed up to receive treatment on a sprained left ankle which forced the linebacker to miss most of the past two games. Briggs returned to the practice field Monday and is expected to be close to full-strength on Sunday.

Although Brian Iwuh performed admirably in place of Briggs, there is simply no way to replace a five-time Pro Bowler.

"Whatever level that is I can play at, I hope it's a high, elite level," Briggs said.

Fellow linebacker Brian Urlacher was also slowed by injuries the past few weeks, suffering from a groin injury and a sprained thumb. Urlacher managed only three tackles against the Washington Redskins on Oct. 24, one of the lowest single game tackle totals in his 11-year NFL career.

Urlacher has recorded three or fewer tackles only five times in 145 career games -- one of those games occurred on Jan. 1, 2005 at Minnesota when the Bears rested their starters for nearly the entire contest.

A healthy Briggs and Urlacher could spell trouble for the Buffalo Bills' offense.

"I feel good," Urlacher said. "Anytime you get a week off in the middle of the season [it helps]. Our bye week came at the right time. Hopefully you can get one Week 6, 7 or 8, so ours worked out pretty good."