The Bears have placed defensive tackle Akiem Hicks on injured reserve, according to a team announcement. Hicks has been soliciting medical opinions in recent days and, apparently, he’s been advised to stay off of the field.
This will not be a season-ender like Kyle Long’s injury, at least the Bears do not believe it will be. They are planning to make the impact defensive lineman one of their IR-return players later this season, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Hicks is not expected to need surgery.
Hicks, who made the Pro Bowl last year, is a key cog in Chicago’s elite defense. Last year, he notched 7.5 sacks, a strong follow-up to his career high of 8.5 quarterback takedowns in 2017.
There was some hope that the team’s Week 6 bye would give Hicks some time to recover and return to action quickly. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. The Bears will look to rebound from their London loss to the Raiders on Sunday against the Saints without one of their best players.
Hicks signed a four year, $48MM extension with the Bears in September of 2017, a deal that included $22MM fully guaranteed at signing. Next year, he’s slated to count for an $11.8MM cap hit.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.