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No one is denying it at Halas Hall because it's obvious in games as well as statistics.

The groin injury to Akiem Hicks, the foot sprain Khalil Mack suffered and even the knee injury Eddie Goldman finally got over three weeks ago all have taken a toll, particularly with the Bears run defense. 

Missed practice time is especially a problem. 

"That's a fine line there because of where they are at and you want them when they are out there to be 100% but you also, for everyone in their own different ways, it's important to get out there and practice as much as you can," coach Matt Nagy said Monday. 'But there is a balance to that too, because you ultimately want them to be as healthy as they can be on Sunday. 

"That's where I think you have a lot of trust and belief in your training staff and your communication with them because the other part of that too is that every team is going through it right now because every team has bumps and bruises but the communication to get reps with those players on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday."

Since his injury on the first play against Detroit, Hicks has had just two practices and both were limited practices. Mack didn't practice at all last week the practices he has had since the Detroit game have been limited.

Hicks was the one where it showed up in snap counts. He was shuttled in and out extensively as coaches tried to keep him fresh, but the groin injury obviously hadn't healed. Hicks played just 24 snaps, 41% of the plays.

In the first three games, Hicks had 77%, 75% and 63% of the snaps, but then missed all but one play against the Lions and all of the Raiders game. He tried to gut one out against the Packers.

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Green Bay's running attack had its best day of the year with 154 yards.

"Just a tough guy, man," defensive line coach Chris Rumph said. "He's tough, going out there and just giving it all for the Bears, giving it all for his teammates and just playing, just fighting through it, man."

Mack has piled up six sacks despite playing with the sprain and he played 80% of the snaps on Sunday after he didn't practice.

"He's always diligent in his preparation, but he understands that what he's trying to do when he's fighting through something and he's not going to be able to take the reps in practice to get into production on the field, that he knows to put in a little extra time," outside linebackers coach Bill Shuey said. "He's got to look at things a little bit differently. And quite honestly, he's got to make sure he's taking mental reps, which is not something that he normally does a lot of. 

"Keeping him focused in when he’s not on the field to make sure he understands how things are going to fit in, and any new calls, making sure that he's ready to roll."

When younger players see Mack fighting through injury, it does leave an impression. Leadership has become more of a thing for Mack.

"He's been great with all that," Shuey said. "But as we all know, words are one thing, actions are another. And those (younger) guys are watching what he's doing. He's setting a good example from that standpoint."

The problem with playing through pain is it might not give the injury a chance to heal. The Bears could use a bye but this isn't coming until November.

Twitter: BearDigest@BearsOnMaven