Not on sideline, DL Akiem Hicks likes tweets critical of Bears
Bears defensive lineman Akiem Hicks didn’t travel for the season finale, but he was following along on social media. And liking, if you’re the Bears, all the wrong things.
MINNEAPOLIS — Bears defensive lineman Akiem Hicks didn’t travel for the season finale, but he was following along on social media. And liking, if you’re the Bears, all the wrong things.
Hicks clicked ‘‘like’’ on tweets that detailed what receiver Darnell Mooney had to say about the Bears’ offensive struggles — ‘‘I don’t call the plays,’’ Mooney said — and another with a meme that asked, ‘‘Why won’t you run the ball?’’
Perhaps more damning was that he ‘‘liked’’ a tweet sent during the game that said: ‘‘The Bears should be leading this game comfortably. They’re now losing.’’
Hicks’ tenure with the Bears is likely over. He has talked all season about coming to terms with the fact that the team wouldn’t give him a contract extension after his deal expired at the end of the season.
His time in Chicago ended in ugly fashion. The Athletic reported that Hicks argued with position coach Chris Rumph last week, prompting Hicks to not be in attendance at Halas Hall. It’s unclear if he left of his own volition or if the Bears sent him home.
The Bears said Hicks didn’t practice all week because he was dealing with the same ankle injury that had bothered him since he hurt it Nov. 8 against the Steelers.
On Friday, coach Matt Nagy was uncharacteristically terse when asked about Hicks’ contributions.
Mooney reaches milestone
Mooney didn’t set out to surpass 1,000 receiving yards this season; he wanted more.
‘‘At the beginning of the season, I wanted to be dominant,’’ he said. ‘‘[Sunday was] not as dominant as I wanted to be. A lot of the guys congratulated me. The receivers tell me it’s a very big thing, so I take credit for it, but it’s not my biggest. I definitely have more to show than just 1,000 yards.’’
Mooney broke into quadruple digits in the second quarter on his way to a career game. He had 12 catches for 126 yards — both were career highs — and finished with 81 catches for 1,055 yards.
Mooney was asked how much he would work with quarterback Justin Fields in the offseason. His answer: a lot, starting Monday.
‘‘We’ll get our exit meetings, and we’re off to Florida,’’ he said.
Fields should make sure he’s healthy first. He tested positive for the coronavirus last week.
When the Bears officially finished third in the NFC North, their 2022 schedule was set.
In addition to their six division games, they’ll host the 49ers, Bills, Dolphins, Eagles, Texans and Washington. They have nine home games next season after playing nine road games this season.
They’ll travel to play the Cowboys, Falcons, Patriots, Giants and Jets.
This and that
Outside linebacker Robert Quinn got a half-sack Sunday, setting the Bears’ single-season record at 18½.
• Receiver Allen Robinson capped perhaps the most disappointing season of his career with two catches for 22 yards. In 12 games, he had 38 catches for 410 yards after being hit with the franchise tag last offseason.