Bears hope to have Peppers against Vikings

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LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) -- The Chicago Bears hope to have Pro Bowl defensive end Julius Peppers available this week against Minnesota after he mildly sprained his left knee.

Peppers was injured in the first half of Monday's loss at Detroit and briefly left the game.

Coach Lovie Smith says the knee was "still sore" Wednesday, but he will "hopefully" be able to practice Friday and play this week. Smith also says defensive tackle Matt Toeaina also suffered a knee injury against the Lions and that defensive end Corey Wootton will hopefully be available. He missed the first three games with a knee injury and sat out Monday with a broken hand.