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Bears trying to find more reps for Williams
By Bob LeGere | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 12/10/2009 12:01 AM

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Jamar Williams' 20-tackle effort last week, when he was subbing for injured Lance Briggs at weak-side linebacker, earned him more playing time. But Briggs was back at practice Wednesday, so where does Williams play?

"When you play like that, it warrants more (playing) time, but it's not like it'll be at Lance Briggs' position," coach Lovie Smith said. "Jamar did a great job, but he's not Lance Briggs. We'll always try to get players on the field that we feel like can help us win. He proved last week that he could do that. We'll just let the rest of the week play out and try to find ways to get him a few reps."

A groin injury that sidelined middle linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer Wednesday could be the perfect opening for Williams, at least for this week.

If Hillenmeyer can't go, the Bears would probably move Nick Roach from the strong side to the middle and plug Williams in on the strong side. When Hillenmeyer was hurt earlier in the season, Roach started three games in the middle before moving back to strong side, where he's started eight games this season, including the last six.

Everything's fine: Jay Cutler said the minor hand injury he suffered vs. the Rams is fine.

"I'm going to be ready to go on Sunday," he said. "Because of the way we were running the ball, we didn't have to throw it that much."

Asked if the injury was to his hand or finger, Cutler said, "A little bit of both."

"Getting treatment?" the testy Cutler was asked.

"Yes," he replied. "Good question."

Cutler was also asked if coaches had said anything to him about arguing with officials.

"Well, Lovie said something during the game," Cutler said, "but no, not really."

Cutler was asked what Smith said.

"(He said,) 'Let me handle it,' " Cutler said. "Why, do you view it as a problem?"

Told that it could be if it resulted in a fine or penalty, Cutler said: "You don't pay the fine, so I think it will be OK."

Strip search: On the most recent Monday Night Football game, Jon Gruden said Green Bay cornerback Charles Woodson was the best in the NFL at stripping the ball.

Woodson had 4 forced fumbles this year; Bears cornerback Charles Tillman has 6.

"I would agree with 'Chuckie,' " Tillman said, using Gruden's nickname. "I would agree with Gruden I suppose. I don't care about none of that stuff. Everyone's entitled to their own opinion."

Injury update: Wide receiver Devin Hester (calf) and middle linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer (groin) did not practice Wednesday and appear questionable for Sunday.

Weak-side linebacker Lance Briggs (knee) and offensive tackle Orlando Pace (groin), who missed last Sunday's game, returned but were limited, as were defensive tackles Tommie Harris (knee) and Israel Idonije (knee). All are expected to play with the possible exception of Pace.