With Forte out, Bears hand off to Barber, Bell

By Andrew Seligman

Associated Press

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 7 2011 12:00 a.m. MST

Chicago Bears running back Marion Barber (24) is tackled by Kansas City Chiefs defenders Kendrick Lewis (23) and Derrick Johnson (56) in the first half of an NFL football game in Chicago, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2011. Coming in at right is Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher (59).

Charles Rex Arbogast, Associated Press

LAKE FOREST, Ill. — Kahlil Bell understands the Chicago Bears are in a difficult spot.

They're missing their top two offensive players with quarterback Jay Cutler and running back Matt Forte sidelined indefinitely with injuries. Losses are starting to pile up, too, and a playoff berth that appeared a certainty not too long ago is hardly a sure thing at the moment.

The Bears (7-5) have dropped two straight since Caleb Hanie took over for Cutler after winning five in a row, and now, they're trying to get by without their top ball carrier after Forte sprained the medial collateral ligament in his right knee against Kansas City on Sunday.

That means they're leaning more on Marion Barber and Bell, who acknowledges he's "relatively untested in this league."

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