Defensive lineman Akiem Hicks, who hurt his left elbow against the Raiders, won’t play again until December — if at all this season.
The Bears put Hicks on injured reserve, guaranteeing that he’ll miss the next eight games. Were he to return from IR — each team is allowed to bring two players back — Hicks would play the last three games of the season, starting with the Dec. 15 matchup against the Packers at Lambeau Field. According to league rules, he could begin practicing two weeks earlier.
“In terms of being out on the field, his mentality, his toughness, all those kinda things, those are things that he really prides himself on,” defensive line coach Jay Rodgers said. “He’s a nasty player. He loves to play physical, all those kinds of things.
“We have a good group. We have guys that will step into those roles and play well.”
Hicks, who was inside Halas Hall on Tuesday, will stay with the Bears and help his teammates — including Bilal Nichols, who’s expected to return from a broken hand Sunday.
“He’s going to be with us throughout the game-planning, he’s going to be with us on game day, he’s going to be on the sidelines, all those kinds of things,” Rodgers said. “You’re going to feel his presence on the sideline and everything we do from here to whenever [he returns].”
Hicks’ left arm was pinned between teammate Khalil Mack and Raiders running back Josh Jacobs during the first quarter of the Oct. 6 game in London. He appeared to dislocate his elbow, though coach Matt Nagy wouldn’t confirm it.
‘‘It’s still a ‘do-your-job defense,’ and we don’t have to do anyone else’s,” outside linebackers coach Ted Monachino said. “We all need to pull the rope a little harder than we did when Akiem was in there. From a pass-rush standpoint, those other guys that are in there are still going to get great push. It’s not going to be Akiem Hicks, but we’re going to get great push in the inside of the pocket.
“So we expect those quarterbacks to continue to set deeper, just like they’ve done in the past, so we can run some edges and win at the top. But my guys don’t press.”
The Bears promoted rookie guard Alex Bars from the practice squad to take Hicks’ roster spot. Bars eventually could contend for the starting job that opened when Kyle Long was put on IR on Monday.