Printed on: November 17, 2012

Bears' QB Cutler out vs. Niners


ASSOCIATED PRESS

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- The Chicago Bears were bracing for an injury to Jay Cutler long before the season started. Now, they'll see just how prepared they are.

Cutler will miss Monday's game at San Francisco because of a concussion, leaving the Bears without their starting quarterback. The team announced the decision Friday, meaning Jason Campbell is the likely starter against the 49ers.

Star receiver Brandon Marshall said Cutler is getting better, but he also said there's a bigger picture that goes beyond this week's game.

"Our life, our health, is more important than football," Marshall said. "I think we'll get Jay back sooner than later."

For now, the Bears believe they have enough to get by. They brought in Campbell in the offseason for a situation like this, and he found out before Thursday's practice that he'll be starting.

"You definitely don't want to see anyone get hurt or injured in this business," said Campbell, who's made 70 starts in his career with Washington and Oakland. "We understand it is a tough sport. Sometimes, things like that happen."

Coach Lovie Smith would not say if Cutler will make the trip to San Francisco. Players need to be cleared by team physicians and an independent neurological consultant before they can return, under NFL safety protocols.

Around the NFL

49ers' Harbaugh back to work after heart procedure: At Santa Clara, Calif., San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh is back at work a day after undergoing a minor procedure for an irregular heartbeat.

The reigning NFL Coach of the Year returned to the field to lead San Francisco through Friday's walk-through session, with a full practice scheduled for the afternoon.

Harbaugh, who turns 49 on Dec. 23, was away from the team Thursday for his procedure at Stanford Hospital.

Eagles QB Vick out vs. Washington: At Philadelphia, Eagles quarterback Michael Vick will miss Sunday's game vs. the Washington Redskins due to the effects of a concussion.

Rookie Nick Foles, who replaced Vick during the 38-23 loss to Dallas on Sunday, and who practiced with the first team all week, will get his first NFL start in a battle of 3-6 teams fighting to save their seasons.

RB Mendenhall ready to return for Steelers: At Pittsburgh, insisting he feels well with no setbacks after a full week of practice, running back Rashard Mendenhall is set to return for the Steelers.

Because of an Achilles injury, Mendenhall has missed all four games of a winning streak that the Steelers (6-3) carry into their Sunday showdown with the Baltimore Ravens (7-2).

Ref Corrente fined for obscenities: At New York, referee Tony Corrente has been fined one game check by the NFL for uttering some obscenities with his microphone on during a Nov. 4 game in Indianapolis between the Colts and Dolphins.

A referee of Corrente's experience -- 18 seasons -- earns approximately $9,000 a game.

In the fourth quarter of the game, Corrente inadvertently left his microphone open during a conference with members of the officiating crew. During that conference, Corrente used obscenities that were heard by the crowd and the CBS television audience.

Ditka suffers minor stroke: At Chicago, an ESPN producer says Hall of Famer Mike Ditka has suffered a minor stroke.

ESPN's Seth Markman posted on Twitter that the former Chicago Bears coach and player fell ill Friday and will not appear on the network's NFL shows this weekend.

Markman writes that Ditka "wanted everyone to know he's ok."

Ditka did not immediately return a message from The Associated Press.