Chicago Bears defensive stud Akiem Hicks is one of the more ferocious linemen in the National Football League today. During Week 3, Hicks seemed to have injured his knee. However, after the game, he was seen walking out of the locker room with a duffle bag with a small limp. The positive out of all of this is that he is walking and he did not need any crutches, which is also a good sign for him to play Sunday versus the Minnesota Vikings.

Before, I get into Hicks having the chance play this Sunday, the depth the Bears have behind him is quite concerning. While, Nick Williams and Roy Roberston Harris are good contributors to the defense, both of them combined do not bring the force  and attention Hicks brings on any given play. The push starts with Hicks and it flows within the defensive line with Eddie Goldman and Roy Robertson-Harris who is also playing for the injured Bilal Nichols.

I have no issue with Roy Robertson-Harris and Nick Williams playing, however, Dalvin Cook is the top rusher in the league through Week 3 with 375 yards, 4 touchdowns, and averaging a hefty 6.6 YPC. There is tons of buzz that Akiem Hicks may not play. Now, that would not be ideal because the Vikings’ offensive line stands to win the line of scrimmage battle. Without Hicks, it makes the job for the Vikings much easier and they would have the ability to double team Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd on the outside giving Kirk Cousins time to throw and Dalvin Cook some running lanes.

Overall, the importance of Akiem Hicks in this defense is vital as he helps set the tone physically and as one of their emotional leaders. While Hicks has been one of the more durable linemen during his stint in Chicago, not missing a game as of yet during his Bears tenure, Sunday could mark his first inactive designation. The Bears are already down in the division 0-1. If they lose this game, they will be 0-2. 3 out of the last 4 division games are on the road, and winning on the road is not an easy task. All that said, I fully expect Akiem Hicks to play this Sunday. This is a big game for the Chicago Bears to potentially go 3-1 overall and 1-1 in the division.