By Matt Zahn

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago Bears’ defense has certainly missed their Pro Bowl defensive Lineman Akiem Hicks, who is still on injured reserve.

Hicks won’t be eligible to play against the Dallas Cowboys this Thursday As CBS 2’s Matt Zahn reports, Hicks return to practice is an encouraging sign he will return this season.

“If I can get my body to a place where I feel like I can compete at a high level, there’s nothing that would stop me from being on the field with my boys,” said Hicks.

Akiem Hicks was with his boys on the practice field Monday for the second straight day. But he hasn’t played in a game since dislocating his elbow in week five against the Oakland Raiders. The goal right now, without the benefit of any hard contact in practice, is seeing if his arm is where it needs to be to play against the Green Bay Packers in two weeks.

“We’re testing it right now,” said the former Pro Bowler. “We’re making sure it can do moves I’m accustomed to doing and giving it our best shot.”

Hicks clearly has not enjoyed missing a big chunk of games for the first time in his career, even if he’s stayed jovial on the sidelines during games. He was asked what the rehab process has been like.

“Miserable, miserable,” Hicks replied. “I’m a guy that will grab whatever dumbbell is in the weight room. To go into treatment and not be able to lift more than two, three, four, five pounds, it was a different feeling. It was very humbling.”

Again, Hicks cannot play this week versus the Dallas Cowboys.

The first game he’s eligible to return from injured reserve is against the Green Bay Packers in week 15.

However, the Bears may be without another key player on defense this week. Cornerback Prince Amukamara missed practice Monday with a hamstring injury.