Rams running back Steven Jackson is known for having a high pain threshold. What is not known is if he will play Sunday versus the Bears, and confirmation won't come until about 90 minutes prior to kickoff. Jackson missed all three days of practice this week due to a groin injury and is listed as questionable on the injury report. That groin injury also kept Jackson off the field for most of the second half during St. Louis' Week 2 win over the Redskins.
Many people, myself included, scoffed at the groin injury angle; we thought Jackson was kept off the field as punishment for drawing a 15-yard penalty around the goal line. But it's obviously not a cover. If Jackson is inactive, Daryl Richardson should get the majority of the carries against the Bears, who are not an easy team to run on. Isaiah Pead is also expected to get some playing time, making this backfield kind of murky.
But I am not going to lose twice on the same principle. Prior to last night, I said that I was not sure about Andre Brown against the Panthers. I thought that he would share carries with David Wilson, and things might go differently for Brown this week since there is some tape on him, and defenses are able to prepare for him. Look what happened. So yes, if Jackson is out, I think Richardson is a fine flex play. Pead is the much higher draft pick, but we have seen just about nothing out of him this season while Richardson displayed tremendous speed against Washington. I think he deserves at least 15 touches and can turn them into some goodness against Chicago. It's all predicated on Jackson being ruled out, but I'm upbeat about Richardson.