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Bears’ Michael Bush out for season; Kahlil Bell signed

Bears running back Michael Bush is tackled by Vikings cornerback Josh Robinsfourth quarter Chicago Bears 28-10 wover MinnesotVikings Sunday November

Bears running back Michael Bush is tackled by Vikings cornerback Josh Robinson in the fourth quarter of the Chicago Bears 28-10 win over the Minnesota Vikings Sunday November 25, 2012 at Soldier Field. | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times

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Updated: December 18, 2012 2:42PM



The Bears placed running back Michael Bush on injured reserve, ending his season, and signed Kahlil Bell, the team announced.

The Sun-Times reported earlier today the moves were expected.

Bush injured his ribs Dec. 9 against the Minnesota Vikings, and he was in uniform Sunday against the Green Bay Packers but didn’t play.

“We were only going to use him if we had to,” Bears coach Lovie Smith said. “Still wasn’t quite ready to go.”

Heralded for his knack for converting in short-yardage situations, the Bears were stuffed twice on the goal line and on 2nd and 1 on the opening series of the game. The Bears settled for a field goal and punted, respectively.

On the season, Bush has 114 carries for 411 yards. His 3.6 yards per run average is solid. But what stands out is the fact that he’s scored five touchdowns.

Matt Forte went to the Pro Bowl last year, but his record in converting in short-yardage situations is less than ideal. Bush, meanwhile, is one of the more effective short-yardage backs in the NFL. In March, the Bears signed Bush to a four-year, $14 million contract.

And for a big back (6 foot 1, 245 pounds), Bush has very good hands and catches the ball well out of the backfield.

Bell appeared in three games this season for the New York Jets, and he had one catch for two yards but lost a fumble. In two games for the Bears earlier this season, Bell had 12 carries for 32 yards and one catch for 11 yards.

Armando Allen remains on the Bears roster.



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