Coach Lovie Smith and the training staff, however, are certain to have the final say concerning Forte's injured right ankle.
Forte was back on the practice field Wednesday for the first time since spraining his ankle in a Sept. 13 loss to the Packers in Green Bay. He appeared to run and cut without issue during individual drills — the only portion of practice open to the media. Forte, who acknowledged being able to sprint, said those drills were the extent of his participation.
His limited role Wednesday didn't make Forte any less optimistic about Monday night.
"As long as you know how to take care of your body, that's how you get back on the field," he said. "I've had ankle injuries before and I know how to work with them. You have to want to get back on the field.''
Forte figured he would be back sooner rather than later because his ankle never became extremely swollen. He used a hyperbaric oxygen chamber and teammate Charles Tillman's Arpwave device — an electrical stimulus unit — to help expedite the healing process.
When asked point blank if he would be ready to play against the Cowboys, Forte responded, "Yeah.''
The Bears running back situation, as a whole, will be worth monitoring the rest of the week. Backup Michael Bush, who started for Forte last Sunday, apparently sustained a shoulder injury against the Rams. When approached, Bush declined comment. He did practice Wednesday.
The Bears worked out running backs Ryan Grant and Jacob Hester Tuesday, fueling speculation about the status of both Forte and Bush. Grant reportedly was offered a deal but signed with the Redskins, citing them as a better fit for him. Hester remains a free agent.
Smith admitted Bush took a few hard shots against the Rams but stopped short of calling his veteran running back injured. The coach said it was good to get third back Kahlil Bell extra reps against the Rams.
Bell wouldn't speculate on how much playing time he might get Monday night.
"I just stay ready and try to make plays when they call my number,'' Bell said. "I can't worry about how many reps I'm going to get or who they're bringing in to work out.''
The Bears need to work out their offensive kinks, running game included. They sit a respectable 13th in the league with 103.7 rushing yards per game and face a Cowboys team ranked 19th in rushing defense (113 yards per game) but ranked first overall in total defense (250 yards).
Offensive coordinator Mike Tice's offense stands 27th in the league after three games with an average of 290 yards.
The last time the Bears played at Cowboys Stadium, Forte carried the ball 10 times for 29 yards in a 27-20 Bears victory. He was asked about the importance of getting the running game and passing game in sync Monday.
"It's real big, especially (for) me — I have missed a game,'' he said. "(But we need) to get in sync so we can help the defense out. The defense has been playing lights out. We need to put a lot of points on the board so that they at least can rest a little bit.''