The Chicago Bears are coming into Week 13 looking to stick around in the playoff race and players like Matt Forte, Jeremy Langford and Alshon Jeffery will need to step up for Jay Cutler against the San Francisco 49ers. Martellus Bennett is looking to come back after being held out last week with Zach Miller getting the start for John Fox.
The Bears are 5-6 and still hanging around in the NFC playoff race, but they will need some help if they want to get into one of the wild card spots. The team comes in after a win against the Packers and now they have the 49ers, who have struggled this season overall and on the road. Matt Forte returned from a knee injury against the Packers, but Jeremy Langford continued to get work for John Fox and the running backs could split time again this week.
Langford stepped in and played very well while Forte was out with an injury and now that he is back, the team could start favoring Forte again. Last week both players got solid work and according to ESPN.com, Forte played in about 55 percent of the snaps on offense, while Langford was on the field for 50 percent of the snaps for the Bears. Forte had 16 touches compared to 13 for Langford, so fantasy owners should feel confident in using both players this week against a struggling 49ers defense.
Alshon Jeffery has been dealing with injuries all season, but he was removed from the injury report for Week 13, according to Pro Football Talk. Jeffery has been very good when he has been on the field, but he has only played in six games for the Bears this season. Jeffery comes in after putting up seven catches for 90 yards against the Packers and this season he has 43 catches for 605 yards and has been averaging just over 100 yards per game. Jeffery hasn't scored a TD since back in Week 8, but he should be a prime redzone target for Jay Cutler on Sunday.
The Bears tight end situation has some issues, as the Chicago Tribune reports that there is some "tension" between Martellus Bennett and the team. According to Brad Biggs, Bennett "expressed frustration" last week about his role on offense and while he was out in Week 12 with a rib injury, there is a chance that his frustrations led to the tight end being inactive. Bennett had 90 catches last season and this year he has just 50 over 10 games.
The emergence of Zach Miller may also be contributing to the situation, as Miller has been solid over the past four games and has four touchdowns in that time. Bennett has three this season and Miller comes in with 12 catches over this stretch after not registering any catches between Week 4 and Week 8. Bennett likely will be active this week and it will be interesting to see how the Bears split time between Miller and Bennett.
Quick update on rookie Kevin White: The Bears first round pick has been back at practice and the wide receiver was able to do individual drills with the team, according to Jeff Dickerson of ESPN.com. White has been out with an injury for the entire season so far.