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Jay Cutler Injury Update: Lovie Smith Says Chicago Bears Will Pursue Veteran QB

In a noon press conference on Monday, Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith announced the team will pursue the services of free agent veteran quarterback. Coach Smith said the Bears expect to get Cutler back late in the year, but still anticipate signing an additional QB to backup Caleb Hanie, saying,  "The plan is to look for a veteran, preferably."

Lovie confirmed the Bears will move forward with 4th-year pro Caleb Hanie, an undrafted free agent out of Colorado St. as their starting QB. Concerning Cutler's return, Smith said "not today, but hopefully fairly quick," later suggesting the the Bears may get Jay Cutler back in time for a late-season Superbowl push: "Was it a season-ending injury? No."

Smith tipped his hand a little on the Bears future gameplan, suggesting the Bears will employ a toned-down version of the offensive playbook, saying, "Offensively, we're going to be relying on a our running game a bit more."

Smith also said the Bears will place long-time long-snapper Patrick Mannelly on the injured reserve (IR), and he intimated the team will possibly look for external solutions to their long-snapping needs.

Quotes transcribed from ESPN AM 1000 live broadcast.

Fore more coverage on the Chicago Bears, head to Windy City Gridiron. Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more breaking news and up-to-the minute coverage on the Jay Culter injury.