Jay Cutler still hasn't been cleared to play in Sunday's game against the Minnesota Vikings, which is troubling news for any Chicago Bears fan who watched Monday night's loss in San Francisco.
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But Bears coach Lovie Smith continues to speak optimistically about Cutler's status, despite the quarterback being listed as questionable on the team's official injury report.
Smith said Cutler is "looking good" to play Sunday, according to Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune. That's similar to what Smith said earlier in the week.
Still, Cutler is awaiting official clearance. He'll meet with an independent nuerologogist Saturday as a final step in the process.
We heard at this point last week that 49ers quarterback Alex Smith was expected to be cleared and play. That didn't happen, so the Bears can't assume Cutler will be cleared until he passes the final step. The NFC playoff race could swing on the outcome; Chicago is desperate to get back on the right track against an NFC North rival.