After yet another outstanding relief performance, backup quarterback Josh McCown has a passer rating of 103.2 for the season. Sunday he directed a 74-yard TD drive on the Bears' final possession, the only series he played, in the 21-19 loss to the Lions.
McCown completed 6 of 9 passes for 62 yards, including an 11-yard scoring pass to Brandon Marshall, that left him with a 123.4 passer rating for the game after he relieved hobbled starter Jay Cutler.
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"It's like every week," McCown said. "You never know if you're going to get in. It's just a matter of staying ready, getting some throws in (on the sideline) and staying loose."
Because McCown was in almost constant communication with Cutler, he was aware that the condition of the starter's sprained ankle was deteriorating.
"I am so dang proud of him," McCown said. "I know how bad he was hurting. To keep himself out there and keep battling, it just speaks to his toughness. After he got rolled up on, every series we were checking in. 'How you doing? How's it feel?'"
After a shaky first pass, McCown hit 5 of 6 to get the Bears in the end zone, but Matt Forte was stuffed on the attempted 2-point conversion.
"He scared me a little bit with that first ball he threw 5 yards short (of Earl Bennett) in the ground," Marshall said. "Josh McCown stepped up again. He just didn't have enough time today."
Wait and see:
Quarterback Jay Cutler wasn't sure if his injured ankle would allow him to start against the Ravens on Sunday at Soldier Field.
"We'll see (today) when I wake up," Cutler said. "We'll go from there. I don't know. We just had an X-ray, and I'm walking."
Cutler wasn't sure when he was hurt but thought it was some time in the second quarter, when his left ankle was rolled up on.
"We taped it up (at halftime) and it was stiff, but I felt like I could go as long as I kept some movement in it. It got worse and worse as we went on."
With David Bass filling in at defensive left end in place of injured Shea McClellin (hamstring), the Bears had five rookies in Sunday's lineup, including linebackers Jon Bostic and Khaseem Greene, right tackle Jordan Mills and right guard Kyle Long.
Since the Bears opened in nickel defense, nickel cornerback Isaiah Frey was in as an extra defensive back in place of Greene.
Sitting it out:
Sunday's inactive included quarterback Jordan Palmer, linebacker Lance Briggs (shoulder), long-snapper Patrick Mannelly (calf), offensive linemen James Brown and Jonathan Scott, defensive tackle Jeremiah Ratliff (groin) and defensive end Shea McClellin (hamstring).