Bears

Cutler Recovering After Knee Injury

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2011 NFC Championship: Green Bay Packers v Chicago Bears

Quarterback Jay Cutler #6 of the Chicago Bears on the sideline in the third quarter after leaving the game with an injury against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011. (Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO (CBS) – Bears quarterback Jay Cutler will have an MRI on his knee later Monday, after an injury took him out for the second half of the team’s losing NFC Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers.

Cutler said he took a hit to the outside of the knee in the second-to-last series before halftime.

He returned to the field in the third quarter, but said he couldn’t put any pressure on his leg.

He was replaced by Todd Collins, who in turn was replaced by Caleb Hanie in the Bears’ 21-14 loss.

Cutler will have an MRI later Monday, and says he hopes he doesn’t need surgery.

During the second half of the game, the Internet and Twitter were abuzz with current and former NFL players having knee-jerk reactions to Cutler’s injury. Linebacker Brian Urlacher and Coach Lovie Smith quickly came to Cutler’s defense.

“Jay was hurt. I don’t question his toughness, he’s tough as hell,” Urlacher said. “He’s one of the toughest players on our football team. He doesn’t complain when he gets hit. He goes out there and plays every Sunday, he practices every single day, so no we don’t question his toughness.”

There were more than a few comments on Twitter when it became clear Cutler would not be back.

“If I’m on chicago team jay cutler has to wait till me and the team shower get dressed and leave before he comes in the locker room!” Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Darnell Dockett tweeted.

“Folks i never question a players injury but i do question a players heart,” wrote Deion Sanders, former cornerback and current NFL analyst.

Bears coach Lovie Smith grew testy after being asked about Cutler’s injury.

“He hurt his knee and he was out, all right?” Smith said. “There’s nothing else for me to tell you on that. I don’t know exactly when it happened, he couldn’t go and that was that.”

Added Urlacher: “Nothing like jealous people at home watching. Players around the league you said, right? Yeah, I love jealous people when they are watching our game on TV while their season is over.”

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS Radio and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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