CHICAGO - OCTOBER 17: Israel Idonije #71 of the Chicago Bears hits Matt Hasselbeck #8 of the Seattle Seahawks at Soldier Field on October 17, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois. The Seahawks defeated the Bears 23-20. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Israel Idonije; Matt Hasslebeck
It's the biggest game in Jay Cutler's career; Julius Peppers' first playoff game as a Bear, and Brian Urlacher's first playoff game since playing in the Super Bowl. Do you need anything else? You do? Then read on.
Ring rust or rested and relaxed? In boxing, it's called ring rust -- the problems that a long layoff will give a fighter. After losing and then sitting a week out with a bye, will the Bears have a case of ring rust? Judging by the last time they had a loss then a bye, no. Early in the season, they lost to the Redskins, had a bye, then rattled off five wins in a row.
To kick or not to kick: Every team who has played the Bears has faced the dilemma: do we kick it to Devin Hester? He did get a return touchdown against the Seahawks early in the season. He may get the chance to do it again because Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has indicated that he's not going to back down against one of the best return men of all time.
Healthy appetite: The Bears are still incredibly healthy (Knock on wood throw salt over your shoulder spit twice). No one missed practice on Friday. The only Seahawk to miss practice was Lofa Tatupu, who sustained a concussion in Seattle's win over New Orleans. He still has to pass the NFL's concussion test.
Samoa's finest: Matt Toeina, Brandon Manumeluna and Pisa Tinoisamoa will have a special group of fans cheering for them against the Seahawks. The three Samoan players have Samoan fans -- complete with jerseys, Samoan chants and traditional Samoan chants.
Running man: Matt Forte should get plenty of love on Sunday, as the Bears are playing the worst running defense in the league and Forte is averaging more than five yards per carry in his last four games.
Sack-tastic: In the Bears last game against the Seahawks, they did not sack Matt Hasselbeck, even once. For a win Sunday, Julius Peppers or Israel Idonije really need to get their hands on the 35-year-old Hasselbeck.
Weather: Expect a high of 22 and light snow for game time.
History lesson: The Bears and the Seahawks have only met in the playoffs once, in the divisional playoff game that the Bears won in 2006. Will history repeat?