Injury report: Panthers without key starters in vital game for Bears

Injury report: Panthers without key starters in vital game for Bears originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Carolina Panthers will be without several key players for Thursday night’s contest against the Bears.

Here’s a quick injury report from Carolina:

  • Brian Burns: OUT (concussion)

  • Leviska Shenault Jr.: OUT (ankle)

  • DJ Chark: Doubtful (elbow)

  • Von Bell: Questionable (quadriceps)

  • CJ Henderson: OUT (concussion)

  • Xavier Woods: Questionable (thigh)

  • Stephen Sullivan: OUT (shoulder)

The Bears will also be without several key players on Thursday, including Justin Fields and Tremaine Edmunds. Here’s the full injury report from the Bears ahead of Thursday.

Tyson Bagent will make his fourth consecutive start for the Bears on Thursday. On the subject of Fields, who was at one point considered a possibility to return on Thursday, Matt Eberflus said he’s still progressing positively.

“He is progressing every day,” head coach Matt Eberflus said Wednesday of Fields. “He is not medically cleared yet.”

Fields could ramp things up in practice with the mini bye the Bears will get between Week 10 and 11. He’s still throwing with a glove to relieve the pain. He also has plenty of boxes to check, outside of medical clearance, before the Bears will be comfortable returning him under center.

As far as Thursday’s game, it holds plenty of weight for the 2024 NFL draft. As it stands, the Bears own the No. 2 and 3 picks in the draft, on account of their own plus the Panthers’ they acquired last offseason.

Win against the Panthers: catapult the No. 2 pick. Lose against the Panthers: boost the No. 3 pick. Considering the Panthers have one win to the Bears’ two, it’s pretty imperative the Bears defeat the Panthers to keep them to their lone win and boost the odds of earning a higher draft pick on their end.

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