Bears activate Akiem Hicks from IR going into matchup at Green Bay

The Chicago Bears activated defensive tackle Akiem Hicks from injured reserve on Saturday, a day before a key matchup against the rival Green Bay Packers.

A Pro Bowl pick last season, Hicks dislocated his elbow during an Oct. 6 game against Oakland in London.

“I knew it was coming and prepared accordingly,” Hicks said earlier in the week. “One of the things I really focused on was just making sure my elbow was in the strongest place possible. We still have some finishing up to do and there's all these dates to make gains and get a little bit better. Just working on that.”

The Bears (7-3) trail the first-place Packers (10-3) by three games in the NFC North.

The Bears put tight end Ben Braunecker on injured reserve on Saturday. Braunecker had six catches for 59 yards and a touchdown in 11 games this season.

The Bears said wide receiver Taylor Gabriel and offensive lineman Bobby Massie will not travel with the team for Sunday's game.