Gabe Carimi might be active vs. Eagles
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Although rookie Gabe Carimi continues to make strides toward returning from a partially dislocated right knee cap, Lance Louis is expected to make his third consecutive start at right tackle when the Chicago Bears play the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday night, according to league sources.
There is a chance Carimi could be active against the Eagles if the knee responds favorably during the upcoming week of practice. Carimi has missed the past five games after suffering the injury in the first half of the Bears' Week 2 loss in New Orleans.
The Bears' 2011 first-round draft choice was vague when discussing his status following Tuesday's workout at Halas Hall.
"I'm not sure yet, it's going to be up to the coaches," Carimi said. "I know they want me to be confident on it [the knee], so just waiting for that. Stability is fine, pain is low, So everything is coming along. "Nobody likes being injured, you get away from the guys, but I'm glad to be working back into it. That's all I can say right now, I'm just glad to be back into the mix of things."
While Carimi could still be a week or two away from being back to full strength, wide receiver Earl Bennett has been medically cleared to return to action Monday night. Bennett suffered a serious internal torso injury when Saints safety Roman Harper hit Bennett square in the chest with his helmet in the first half of the Bears' 30-13 defeat.
"I feel good ... I'm ready to go Monday," Bennett said Tuesday. "I got cleared. I'm fine. I'm ready to go. Nothing will hold me back from Monday's game. I look forward to it."
Even though Bennett was able to practice the past few weeks, the team's medical staff took a cautious approach with his injury. The Bears went as far as to list Bennett as probable for the London game versus Tampa Bay, only to make the wideout a gameday inactive.
"The coaches just thought I wasn't ready to go," Bennett said. "I just have to live with it and keep going. But I don't think they'll be able to hold me out this Monday.'
"I have no worries ... I'm not scared of anybody. If I go across the middle, they better be scared."
Jeff Dickerson covers the Bears for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.