Sunday was a big day for the Chicago Bears in more ways than one.
The Bears got a much-needed win over the Minnesota Vikings. The win not only helped them improve their overall record to 8-3 but also helped them raise their divisional record in the NFC North to 2-1.
In addition to the big win for the Bears, perhaps just as big was the blowout loss that the Green Bay Packers suffered on the road against the New York Giants. With that loss the Bears moved back into sole possession of first place in the NFC North.
But that move didn't come without a cost.
The Bears lost some key members of their team on Sunday afternoon, some of which will affect the team for the rest of the season. All of the injuries can be found right here, along with the extent of their severity and what they mean to the team.
Devin Hester suffered a concussion early in the Viking game. The injury kept sidelined him for the rest of the game and led to Eric Weems returning kicks and punts.
It seems like it would be best to let Hester rest up and work his way back onto the field instead of forcing him to return early. If he returns early, Hester is at risk of suffering another concussion that could knock him out for even longer, perhaps even into the postseason.
The Bears will be fine if they can't have Hester back for one game.
While it is always ideal to have all of your starters healthy, it would be better to have Hester miss this game than a more important one later on.
This will not be a season-ending injury and it shouldn't affect the playoff picture, provided that Hester makes it back in two weeks. While it's not a good one, this injury doesn't look to be detrimental to the team.
Charles Tillman has had an outstanding season so far, a season that is deserving of consideration for the NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award. Tillman going down would seem like a big loss for the Bears. However, the injury was downplayed by Lovie Smith after the game (via Pro Football Talk), who would only say that Tillman was "fine."
While Smith may say he is fine, Tillman was seen leaving the stadium in a walking boot after Sunday's victory.
Is Tillman fine? What does fine mean?
None of these things have been addressed fully in the media yet, and Bears fans are left wondering how Tillman will be affected by this injury for the rest of the season.
It doesn't appear that the injury to Tillman is too serious, at least not right now.
The walking boot does raise some eyebrows, however, the fact that he was still able to walk means something, right? The team would suffer if Tillman were to miss a significant amount of time. That doesn't look to be the case right now. It seems that the Bears won't miss the Peanut Punch in their secondary for too long.
With the way the Chicago's offensive line has been playing this season, the last thing they needed was a scramble to replace an injured member.
It appears that bad news turned worse for the Bears on Monday when it was revealed that starting guard Lance Louis was placed on injured reserve and will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL (via ESPN). Louis suffered the injury after being blindsided by Jared Allen.
Louis was a player that seemed to be doing solid, and let's face it, the Bears need all the help they can get this season at offensive line.
This is an injury that is absolutely detrimental to the team, especially to an offense that was looking to get back in its groove with the return of Jay Cutler from his injury.
Furthermore, Gabe Carimi, who had never played guard in his life, was forced to learn on the fly after the injuries to the offensive line on Sunday. Now the Bears are forced into quickly deciding what to do with their banged up line and all the holes that remain on it.
Zach Zaidman reported that Briggs was getting his ankle taped up on the sideline and that he seemed like he was doing alright, but the walking boot raises questions.
The injury to Briggs was one that was not highlighted but still could affect his play this Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks.
Briggs is not expected to miss any time and he should be limited at worst in practice this week as the Bears prepare for the Seahawks.
Were Briggs to miss this game, it would not be the worst thing in the world for him. The Bears' two key divisional games coming up. However, it looks like he won't miss a beat and will be back next week.
Stop me if you've heard this before; Matt Forte says how durable he is, gets a new, four-year deal and then goes down with an ankle injury.
Yes, this is the second time this season Forte has been sidelined with an ankle injury. An ankle injury kept him out earlier this season and shot Michael Bush into the starting role.
Even if this injury keeps Forte out for a game or two, it's not the end of the world.
This is why the Bears brought Bush in this past offseason, not only to help Forte but to keep the running game strong if and when Forte got hurt.
It would be smart to keep Forte out against the Seahawks and let him rest. Michael Bush should be able to carry the run game for a week or two until the matchup against Green Bay, and Forte can get all the rest he needs.
The Packers do not have a good rush defense, plain and simple.
If the Bears rest Forte and he is able to come back for the game against Green Bay, the injury Forte suffered against the Vikings shouldn't hurt the team in the long run. Look for Forte to be limited this week, and don't be surprised if he misses the game against the Seahawks this weekend.
Chris Spencer had his share of ups and downs during a crazy week.
Spencer had to step up and start after news broke that Chilo Rachal would be taking leave from the team for personal reasons.
Spencer was injured in the game, however, and got an MRI today on his left knee that revealed some torn cartilage (via the Chicago Tribune's Vaughn McClure).
This news is devastating to the Bears and their offense.
Spencer may not be the Bears' best offensive lineman, but he was still a part of the line. Continuity is important to an offensive line; it helps to grow together and learn as the season goes on.
There is no timetable for Spencer's return, but don't hold your breath waiting for him to get back. It doesn't look good for him this weekend against Seattle and he is most likely doubtful for the game in Minnesota. The big question is whether or not he will be back for the game against Green Bay in a few weeks.
The news about Spencer is not good news, especially with Lance Louis being placed on IR.
The Bears are now in a scramble to find out who will be playing on the offensive line for the next few weeks. Even if all of their other players come back in a few weeks, the Bears will still be at a loss trying to find linemen to play for the rest of the season.