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Chicago Bears need Brian Urlacher to make the playoffs

Bears middle linebacker Brian Urlacher could be lost until the end of the regular season because of a hamstring injury. Are the Bears' playoff chances in jeopardy?

No. They're 8-4. He's been going on bad wheels for a while, and the Bears have been scraping by with the league's second-ranked defense.

He might have been on a bad wheel but he is the QB of the defense. Historically, the Bears have missed him when he's been hurt. Plus. They've got the Vikings and Packers on deck. Tough sledding.

Not to diminish what Urlacher means to this team, but it's easier for defenses to get by without their stars than offenses. You've seen it with Baltimore, playing without Terrell Suggs and Ray Lewis.

On that note, the Bears also could be without NFL interception leader Tim Jennings. Without him and Urlacher in coverage, they're vulnerable. If they lose a couple games, they could be in trouble.

This is a turnover-based defense -- 17 interceptions, 11 forced fumbles. If you want to worry about losing an injured player, worry about Jennings and his eight picks. Goodnight, pally.

Urlacher has the same type of impact that ILB Brian Cushing has for the Texans. The Bears have manned up when they've had to, but Urlacher will be missed. Things could get dicey.

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