Sunday, December 9, 2012
Game day: Snow, Brian Urlacher and more
By Kevin Seifert
MINNEAPOLIS -- Good morning from the snowy Upper Midwest. Snow has been falling outside the Metrodome since Saturday night and the snow has begun in Green Bay, Wis., as well, I'm told by reliable sources. Week 14 is gonna be sweet (and slick).
Remember to tweet me your Week 14 photographs, hopefully with snow included, at @espn_nfcnblog. I've gotten things started over at our Instagram account (kevinseifert_espn).
Let's roll through a few pregame notes before this Chicago Bears-Minnesota Vikings game cranks up:
- ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Bears middle linebacker Brian Urlacher has a Grade 2 strain of his hamstring, which typically sidelines players three to six weeks. That would make Urlacher's availability for the playoffs at least in question. And because his contract expires after this season, it's possible that means he has played his last game with the Bears or the NFL. At this point, though, that's a lot of "ifs."
- The Chicago Tribune reported that rookie Alshon Jeffery will start at receiver opposite Brandon Marshall, with Devin Hester working probably as the No. 3 receiver.
- Most of both teams' injured players were ruled out during the week, so there were no surprises among the gameday inactives. The Bears deactivated guard Chris Spencer and nose tackle Stephen Paea, leaving bigger roles for Edwin Williams and Matt Toeaina, respectively.