One day after Bears coach Lovie Smith avoided definitively naming a starting quarterback for this weekend's game against the Green Bay Packers, ESPNChicago.com cited multiple sources in reporting Tuesday that Josh McCown will receive an opportunity to take the job from Caleb Hanie.
According to ESPNChicago.com, McCown might take over for the Christmas Day game, depending on how he looks in practice this week. McCown told the website he has "no idea" if he'll start against the Packers.
"I'm just gonna get myself ready like I've done every week, and then we'll see what happens," he said.
Hanie threw three interceptions, two of which were returned for touchdowns, and completed just 10 of 23 passes for 111 yards and one TD in Sunday's 38-14 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. McCown connected on 1 of 2 passes for 12 yards with one interception after relieving Hanie.
McCown expressed support for Hanie on Monday, telling the Chicago Sun-Times that he's "the last guy who sits there and says, 'I hope this guy struggles so I can play.' We all have Bears uniforms on. Weâre all part of this team together, and you want your team to do well."
"So nobody's rooting for Caleb more than me," he said. "Your heart breaks for him."
McCown, 32, last saw meaningful NFL action in 2007, when he started nine games for the Oakland Raiders, throwing for 1,151 yards and 10 touchdowns with 11 interceptions. He signed with the Bears on Nov. 23 after starting quarterback Jay Cutler went down with a broken thumb on his throwing hand.
The Bears have all four games they've played since losing Cutler, dropping to 7-7 and fading out of the NFC playoff race.