Bush, Stecker Sit: Neither Reggie Bush nor Aaron Stecker practiced on Wednesday, leaving the Saints with a bare cupboard at runningback.
"I’m optimistic about Aaron and Pierre has handled this real well," Payton said Wendesday.
"We’ll see where Reggie is and we’ll have to make adjustments. It’s happening to a lot of teams, not just us, and whoever is in there will be ready to play.”
Stecker's sprained foot ligaments kept him out of half of the Eagles game but he returned after trainers numbed the area. Bush's torn left PCL has kept him out since Week 14. He last played against the Bucanneers.
Only undrafted free agent Pierre Thomas remains healthy, and Thomas has yet to start a game in the NFL. Thomas and two newcomers may constitute the Saints' runningback depth chart in wintry Chicago.
The forecast for Chicago this Sunday is a high of 34 degrees, 20% chance of snow and 11mph winds out of the southeast.
Roster Moves: Two new Saints are runningbacks: former University of Kentucky, Detroit Lion and Minnesota Viking RB Artose Pinner and former Wake Forest, Berlin Thunder, Cleveland Brown and Tennessee Titan Chris Barclay. Both are Kentucky natives.
Pinner, 5'10, 232, 29, was a 4th round pick of the Lions in 2003 and played in 2006 for the Vikings. A power runner with limited outside ability, Pinner has seven starts and a 3.4 yard/carry average on 250 career carries. He played in seven games for the Falcons this season.
Barclay, 5'10, 180, 24, was undrafted out of Wake Forest, where he left as the school's leading career rushing and one of the ACC's top players. He played in three games for the Titans this year, noting one rush for three yards. Earlier this spring Barclay lit up NFL Europa. Because of the injury to Colston, the Saints may need Copper and Moore on offense and Barclay can return kicks.
Notes: QB Jamie Martin also missed practice with a right foot injury. Last week he missed time with what was listed as a back injury... WR Marques Colston practiced Wednesday and is expected to play. Colston suffered a blood-drawing hit to the chest against the Eagles... WR Dante Ridgeway was put on injured reserve for the team, he had been on the practice squad... The University of Hawai'i football team will practice in the Saints' facility this week in preparation for the Sugar Bowl...