The Bears had guard Kyle Long on the practice field last Friday for the first time since hurting his foot in late October and that opened the door to his return to the active roster before the year is out.
Head coach Matt Nagy was asked on Monday about whether Long will be activated from injured reserve in time to face the Vikings in Week 17.
“I like to use this word and I do believe in it — ‘cautiously optimistic,'” Nagy said, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “I think that he’s doing a good job right now. He feels good. It would be nice to get him out there.”
The Bears can move up to the No. 2 seed with a win and a Rams loss on Sunday, so they’ll likely keep an eye on the scoreboard to see how L.A. is faring against the 49ers. Should getting the bye move out of reach, giving Long some playing time to see if he could help in the postseason would likely be in the cards.