Sick bay: Bears go easy to save bodies

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Sick bay: Bears go easy to save bodies

As he has for the past couple of Wednesdays, coach Lovie Smith put his team through a practice without helmets as part of a late-season plan to save wear on key players already dealing with physical fallout.

Even with the reduced workload, running backs Armando Allen (knee) and Matt Forte (ankle) did not practice, in addition to linebackers Blake Costanzo (calf) and Brian Urlacher (hamstring) and cornerback Charles Tillman (ribs).

The Bears signed former Houston and Miami safety Troy Nolan on Wednesday because of the doubtful situation with Chris Conte (hamstring), who Smith said appears to be headed for a prolonged stretch out of the lineup.

Tackle Jonathan Scott (hamstring) and defensive tackle Henry Melton (chest) were limited on Wednesday.

Several key Detroit Lions were limping through practice as well, with wide receiver Calvin Johnson (kneeankle), tight end Brandon Pettigrew (ankle), safety Louis Delas (knee) and defensive tackle Sammie Hill (toe) out altogether.

Cornerback Chris Hudson was limited with a hamstring strain.

Fast Break Morning Update: Cubs visit White House; Blackhawks, Bulls in action tonight

Fast Break Morning Update: Cubs visit White House; Blackhawks, Bulls in action tonight

Here are some of the top Chicago sports stories from Monday:

Five Things to Watch: Blackhawks collide with Avalanche tonight on CSN

Five Things to Watch: Bulls host Mavericks in search of third straight win

Cubs meet President Obama in unforgettable, symbolic White House visit: ‘They said this day would never come’

Blackhawks' rough weekend 'a little bit of a wake-up call'

The state of the Bulls after the first half of the season

Reports: Dolphins assistant Jeremiah Washburn to be Bears' new O-line coach

Does Cubs president Theo Epstein have a future in politics?

President Obama, with Cubs at White House: 'Among Sox fans, I'm the Cubs' No. 1 fan'

At Cubs' White House visit, President Obama touts Michelle Obama's Cubs fandom, shouts out Jose Cardenal

Fire trade for midfielder Dax McCarty

The state of the Bulls after the first half of the season

The state of the Bulls after the first half of the season

Who are the Bulls? The team that beat Cleveland and Toronto or lost to Dallas, Minnesota and Milwaukee?

That's the question Bulls fans are currently asking and the one Bulls Insider Vincent Goodwill posed in the video above.

The Bulls have had impressive wins and shocking losses, but neither of those should be surprising at this point. The Bulls are, as Goodwill put it, consistently inconsistent.

The first half of the season has proven that Dwyane Wade still has some memorable moments left to give and Jimmy Butler continues to approach superstardom. On the downside, the drama surrounding Rajon Rondo has meant the 'three alphas' that were hyped up in the preseason haven't been the dynamic trio some Bulls fans had hoped.

Coach Fred Hoiberg doesn't have the shooters his system needs, but can he still rally the troops and get something out of Rondo?

Watch the video to see Goodwill's look back on the Bulls' first half and what could be ahead.