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Report: Rams will hire Rob Ryan

RobRyan AP

Yes, there may be an echo in here.  And it extends a lot longer than five minutes.

It’s a 13-day delay, because Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports tonight what Brian Costello of the New York Post reported on January 11:  The Rams will hire Rob Ryan to be their next defensive coordinator.

Per Rapoport, a deal has been struck but nothing has been signed.

Ryan notoriously boasted that he’ll be out of work “for like five minutes” after the Cowboys fired him.

The development takes one more experienced 3-4 coordinator out of play for the Saints, who plan to switch from the 4-3 to the 3-4.

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Tyler Eifert: “In my mind, I’m ready”

Tyler Eifert AP

When his ankle finally healed, his back gave out. So now after months of rehabbing one thing or another, Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert is ready to take the field again.


Via Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer, Eifert said he was ready to get back on the field this week, though he’s still being listed as limited.

In my mind, I’m ready,” Eifert said. “Two weeks ago, before it happened I was in really really good shape and I’ve kind of been laid up just trying to get the back right. All things considered, I don’t think there’s anything else I have to pass.”

Eifert joked that the recent back problem kept him from worrying about the comeback from the ankle injury, saying: “I can’t think about two things at once.”

“I didn’t want to tell anybody that I kinda hurt my back because I got the ankle right and I was ready to play,” Eifert said. “I tried to keep practicing and I couldn’t do anything else. Like I said, I had to tell someone.”

Eifert’s been sidelined by a number of injuries in his career, but when he’s on the field he’s incredibly productive. He caught 13 touchdown passes, and was one of the best red zone targets in the league. And for an offense that has lost its way this season, getting him back would be a huge benefit.

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Jim Schwartz says Eagles’ flat defense is his fault

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JANUARY 19: The new Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz talks to the media on January 19, 2016 at the NovaCare Complex in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) Getty Images

When Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz looked at the tape from last week’s game with Washington, he saw plenty of problems. When he looked in the mirror, he saw another.

Via Paul Domowitch of the Philadelphia Daily News, Schwartz was brutally honest when asked about last week’s flat tire, in which the Eagles gave up 493 yards, 230 rushing yards and recorded no sacks.

“We were bad at all three levels,’’ Schwartz said. “No, let’s make that four levels. We were bad at defensive line. We were bad at linebacker. We were bad in the secondary.

And we were bad at the defensive coordinator position.’’

The Eagles got off to a great start as a defense, and bounced back from a bad first half against the Lions to play better. But there was nothing good about last week’s performance and Schwartz said that started with him.

“It’s my job to put the fires out,’’ Schwartz said. “And to find something, when we’re not having a great day, to be able to have a changeup somewhere. Unfortunately, my changeups didn’t work either.”

Schwartz has practical autonomy, as rookie head coach Doug Pederson doesn’t fiddle with the side of the ball he knows less about. So that puts a lot of pressure on Schwartz, and he knows that.

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Steve Smith: “Our system is broken”

BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 2:  Steve Smith Sr. #89 of the Baltimore Ravens celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Oakland Raiders at M&T Bank Stadium on October 2, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images) Getty Images

The NFL learned the hard way two years ago the problems that can arise from failing to employ proper diligence when investigating domestic violence allegations involving former Ravens running back Ray Rice. A current Ravens player has opted to say things that need to be said given the reality that, two years later, the league failed to employ proper diligence when investigation domestic violence allegations involving soon-to-be-former Giants kicker Josh Brown.

“We have valued the amount of air in a ball but yet devalued when a person or persons may have been harmed and fail to put forth necessary actions of energy and time in which far less important things have taken precedent!” Steve Smith said on social media last night. “There have been players with far less [offenses,] some have been banned, cut on the spot. But this person had behavior patterns behind closed doors unknown to everyone while swift and harsh action handed down to many players without half the details or amount of time.

“Our system is broken the NFL needs to stop acting like they care and start showing people they mean what they say. I will continue to speak for the voiceless and for my mother who is a survivor of domestic violence.”

Smith’s more length comments came after he provided a more succinct assessment of Josh Brown’s situation: “You know what ex-wife was my daughter yo ASS would be on IR.” Smith later admitted that his initial response was “a bit extreme [and] for that I apologize.”

Smith’s assessment of the state of the league isn’t extreme. Millions of dollars and thousands of hours were devoted to justifying an unjustified suspension of Tom Brady over air pressure, and the league trotted out the Keystone Cops for a serious case of domestic violence.

Meanwhile, the NFL once again finds itself hunkering down and circling the wagons and waiting for the storm to blow over. One of these days, the storm is going to blow the house down.

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Friday morning one-liners

FILE - In this Oct. 16, 2016, file photo, Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota passes against the Cleveland Browns in the second half of an NFL football game in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans can win three straight games for the first time in five years if they beat Indianapolis on Sunday, a win that could put them into a tie for first in the AFC South.  (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski, File) AP

WR Justin Hunter has two catches and two touchdowns for the Bills this season.

Huddling seems to be helping the Dolphins offense.

Patriots WR Julian Edelman isn’t sweating his stats over two games with QB Tom Brady.

More personnel changes could be coming for the Jets.

QB Ryan Mallett says he’s ready to go if the Ravens need him.

Bengals coach Marvin Lewis remains close with Browns coach Hue Jackson.

CB Joe Haden knows he can’t help the Browns if he can’t run with A.J. Green.

Steelers WR Sammie Coates is still working with an injured finger.

The Texans expect CB Kareem Jackson back this week.

Colts QB Andrew Luck may be short on receivers this weekend.

The Jaguars need their pass rush to slow down the Raiders offense.

A look at Titans QB Marcus Mariota’s production in the red zone.

LB DeMarcus Ware is getting closer to a return to the Broncos lineup.

All went well in Chiefs LB Justin Houston’s return to the practice field.

Raiders defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. hasn’t lost faith in his unit.

The Chargers would like to see improvement in their special teams work.

Five of the best plays from Cowboys QB Dak Prescott in the first six games.

As you’d expect from a man with the nickname Snacks, Giants DT Damon Harrison knows where to get a good meal in London.

Are more targets in the cards for Eagles WR Dorial Green-Beckham?

The Redskins have been pleased with CB Kendall Fuller’s play in the nickel.

Bears rookie LB Leonard Floyd had a good night in the team’s loss.

Rookie G Graham Glasgow has done well for the Lions.

Packers WR Davante Adams had a career-best night against the Bears.

Facing Carson Wentz may cost the Vikings some fans in North Dakota this weekend.

Assessing Falcons QB Matt Ryan’s chances of being the MVP.

Said Panthers coach Ron Rivera of his defense, “We’ve got to make sure everybody is on the same page. If they’re not, we’ve got to get guys that are going to be on the same page and get them out there.”

The Saints may be making a change at kick returner.

How will the Buccaneers replace WR Vincent Jackson?

There are a lot of outside linebackers on the field in the Cardinals’ newest defensive wrinkle.

Rams DE Robert Quinn hopes to play this weekend.

DL Arik Armstead’s playing time is on the rise with the 49ers.

Seahawks S Kam Chancellor’s status for this weekend remains up in the air.

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Kubiak: Trevor Siemian has been much better this week

SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 13:  Trevor Siemian #13 of the Denver Broncos runs with the ball during the first half of a game against the San Diego Chargers  at Qualcomm Stadium on October 13, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Getty Images

Broncos coach Gary Kubiak and quarterback Trevor Siemian were both dealing with health issues last week.

Kubiak wasn’t on the sideline when Siemian made a return from a week on the bench with a left shoulder injury in a Thursday night loss to the Chargers. Siemian didn’t look entirely comfortable, especially when he’d take a hit from a San Diego defender, and finished the night 30-of-50 for 230 yards.

Kubiak returned to the team on Monday after a week of rest following a hospital trip and said he feels better as a result. He thinks the extended time off has also been a benefit to Siemian after watching him in practice.

“[I] think he’s been much better — obviously last week when he played in the game he was still sore,” Kubiak said, via “To me, watching him turn a few balls loose [in San Diego], he didn’t rotate the way he normally does … It’s been a week now, and you can see a difference.”

Siemian’s injury and a sluggish running game have contributed to two straight losses for the Broncos and the team will be trying to get things back in gear against the Texans on Monday night. With Brock Osweiler making his return to Denver, a good outing for Siemian would be beneficial to the Broncos on a couple of fronts.

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Jordan Matthews: NFL’s talk of integrity rings hollow

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 21:  Jordan Matthews #81 of the Philadelphia Eagles celebrates his touchdown late in the second quarter against the Washington Redskins at Lincoln Financial Field on September 21, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) Getty Images

There are plenty of people scratching their heads over the NFL’s and the Giants multiple failures in the handling of the Josh Brown case.

But from Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews’s perspective, it’s hard to square a teammate getting a 10-game ban for a second offensive of the PED policy while an admitted domestic abuser gets one game.

They always use the words they want to protect the integrity of the game,” Matthews said, via Eliot Shorr-Parks of “I think it is always looked at as the integrity of the football game. Obviously, if somebody makes a mistake like Lane did, or even if somebody does it intentionally if they might try to do something to get an edge, then yes, that can affect a game. So obviously there are some disciplines that should take place.

“But then when we talk about the integrity of the game, and the shield [the NFL logo] . . . you talk about the values that you want to instill in families that actually watch us and look up to us. Then it sends the wrong message that every single time there is an incident with domestic violence or something where there is a physical altercation, especially with a lady . . . it never seems like there is a really big punishment handed down.

“Even with the Ray Rice incident, nothing was really serious until there was public outrage or until the video came out. But my thing is, why do people have to see something for there to be actual steps taken?”

Having empathy and intellectual curiosity would be a good starting point, as well as being good at investigating such instances. The league’s 0-3 on that scorecard at the moment, as more and more people realize how broken their system is.

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Jim Caldwell is not interested in your talk of the postseason

DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 09: Head coach Jim Caldwell of the Detroit Lions watches his team against the Philadelphia Eagles at Ford Field on October 9, 2016 in Detroit, Michigan. The Lions defeated the Eagles 24-23.(Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) Getty Images

Lions coach Jim Caldwell rarely responds to much of anything.

But if you really want to see nothing, ask him when he might discuss his team’s chances to make the playoffs.

Never,” Caldwell replied, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “Next question.”

Of course, the Lions are just 3-3, but they’ve beaten the Eagles and Rams in succession and are playing at a high rate lately. And With Washington (4-2) coming to town this week, they have a chance to stake themselves as legitimate wild card contenders. Beyond the division leaders, only this week’s opponent, the Eagles (3-2) and Packers (4-2) are about .500 in the NFC.

Caldwell said “it’s nonsense to be talking about” playoff possibilities at this stage of the season. in the season and that his team is all-in with its one-game-at-a-time approach.

“These guys have been around,” Caldwell said. “They understand how hard it is, how tough it is. We don’t start making projections. We haven’t done anything. We’re still trying to survive, we’re fighting and scratching for every — we’re trying to make it through practice half the time, let alone talk about looking that far down the road. We’ve got to find a way to keep getting better. Against these teams we’re facing — we’re facing a team that’s got a four-game winning streak, that’s playing awfully well right now, and we’re talking about something else other than that. We don’t do that. That’s kind of what you guys do. We never do it.”

And while it wasn’t exactly a Jim Mora rant, Caldwell’s steady approach seems to be working for the Lions, after their closed last year with a 6-2 finish.

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Kyle Long says his arm injury is serious

Matt Forte, Kyle Long AP

Bears offensive lineman Kyle Long said after Thursday night’s loss to the Packers that he suffered a serious arm injury.

My arm’s f—ed up,” Long said. “Tough spot to be in.”

Long was already playing through an injury to his left shoulder. He did not reveal precisely what happened to his arm last night, but he indicated that he’d like to try to keep playing through his injuries.

The 27-year-old Long has started every game but one in his four-game NFL career.

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Aaron Rodgers knows he’s probably going to have to keep slinging it

GREENBAY, WI - OCTOBER 20: Quarterback Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers looks on against the Chicago Bears in the fourth quarter at Lambeau Field on October 20, 2016 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Getty Images

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers might not be thrilled with the offense as called last night. But at the moment, he doesn’t have much choice but to live with it.

After effectively running out of running backs, Rodgers completed 39 of his 56 passes to beat the Bears.

I think this is closer to how we’re going to have to play moving forward,” Rodgers said, via Rob Demovsky of

Take a deep breath here, and follow the bouncing ball of their running back position. Eddie Lacy just went on IR after ankle surgery, meaning any comeback will be late in the season. James Starks is out a few more weeks after a knee surgery of his own. They promoted Don Jackson from the practice squad, and he injured his hand after just two carries. That left Knile Davis (acquired in trade during the short week) and a bunch of receivers to do the running, so it was hard to sustain a balanced attack.

“It’s one game; it’s a one-game victory,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “And that’s really the reflection of how you plan for a season. You do what you have to do, you play how you have to play. We have the ability to run it as much as we need to, the ability to throw it as much as we need to. Obviously Eddie Lacy is a featured, primary player for our offense, so having both him and James not available, you shift gears. Don Jackson obviously was injured there early, it was unfortunate Knile Davis just got here two days ago, so we’ll work through that.”

Rodgers did throw for 326 yards, but it took him until his 55th pass to top 300, and was the first time he’s done that since last November. The lack of deep-passing success (whether it’s on the receivers getting open or Rodgers getting it to them) has been a trend with the Packers lately, and something they have to address at some point.

If, you know, Rodgers’ arm is still attached to his body.

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King County Sheriff blasts NFL over Josh Brown

New York Giants kicker Josh Brown speaks with reporters at NFL football training camp, Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016, in East Rutherford, N.J. Brown has confirmed that an arrest on a domestic violence charge in May 2015 led to his one-game suspension by the NFL for violating the league's personal conduct policy. (AP Photo/Tom Canavan) AP

In announcing they were going to re-open their investigation into the domestic abuse history of New York Giants kicker Josh Brown, the NFL claimed the King County (Wash.) Sheriff’s Office denied any overtures made by the league to learn more about the case and allegations against Brown.

Sheriff John Urquhart fired back at the NFL in an interview with Dori Monson on KIRO 97.3-FM in Seattle on Thursday.

“I don’t like to get pushed around by a bully,” Urquhart said.

The NFL said in a statement Thursday that repeated attempts to seek cooperation from the Sheriff’s Office were denied.

Because the case against Brown was an open investigation, the Sheriff’s Office was not going to release case files. Urquhart said they never received any written requests from anyone claiming to be a representative of the NFL. He said four days after the incident with Brown opened an investigation, the Sheriff’s Office received a public disclosure request from a Robert Agnew from a generic email address. Another request came from Agnew months later where he again didn’t state his affiliation.

“Nowhere on the request does he say that he works for the NFL and so, we don’t know that it’s the NFL and we’re not gonna give it out anyway, so we denied it,” Urquhart said. “… To our discredit, perhaps, we didn’t use the Google, to Google this guy’s name. Turns out that he is a security representative based in Seattle for the NFL. But he never told us that. The NFL never told us that. At no time has the NFL ever filed a written request – public disclosure request – for any of these files. Period. It’s never happened.”

A different league representative did make calls to the Sheriff’s Office seeking the case file. She was also denied multiple times due to the fact the case was an open investigation. A Seattle police officer claiming to represent the league also asked for the files and was denied as well.

Urquhart said if the league had gone through proper public disclosure channels, the request would have come to his desk and a conversation with the league about the situation could have been more fruitful.

“I would have said exactly the same thing, ‘We cannot release the case file.’ But since this is a hot-button item in the NFL, since it’s the NFL, we probably would have told them orally a little bit more about what we had.” he said. “But we don’t have them calling us here. We’ve got some goofus from Woodinville named Rob Agnew asking for the case file. We have no idea who he is.”

“We would have told them… ‘Be careful, NFL, don’t rush into this. This case is blossoming way more than what happened on May 22nd of 2015. We’re getting more information, be careful,’” he said. “Again, we’re not gonna give them specifics but we certainly would have cautioned the NFL to be careful about what they were going to do.”

Urquhart said he was unhappy with the NFL’s placing blame on his department for the NFL not knowing enough about the case.

“I don’t like the NFL taking shots at the sheriff’s office when it’s not deserved,” Urquhart said. “It’s real simple.”

“I’ll give them credit, they did not have all the information. There’s no question about that,” he said. “And, frankly, I’m not criticizing them for only giving him a one-day suspension based on what they knew. What he was arrested for, in the scheme of things, was relatively minor but obviously there was much more under the surface that apparently they did not know and we couldn’t tell them.

“But for them to say it’s our fault — and it’s not our fault any more than it’s their fault when you get right down to it — for them to say it’s our fault that they only gave them a one-day suspension, that’s just not true. That’s what I object to.”

The Giants signed kicker Robbie Gould on Thursday and left Brown behind as they traveled to London for their game against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday.

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Report: Browns, Pryor discussing contract extension

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Terrelle Pryor (11) runs for a touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) AP

For someone who once said he couldn’t be a receiver because he couldn’t catch, Terrelle Pryor has done a fantastic job of making the transition for the Cleveland Browns.

Pryor has done so well in making the move to receiver that the Cleveland Browns are looking to give him a contract extension.

According to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Browns and Pryor have had preliminary discussions on a new contract.

The former quarterback has become a bright spot on another underwhelming Browns team. Pryor has caught 33 passes for 413 yards and three touchdowns in six games for Cleveland this season. He’s rushed for a fourth touchdown as well. Pryor is currently on a one-year contract with the Browns.

With Seattle in 2014, Pryor wouldn’t entertain the idea of playing another position.

I don’t know how to catch. I don’t know how to run the ball as a running back,” Pryor said. “I’ve been a quarterback my whole life.”

The Browns should be thrilled Pryor committed to a change. Pryor should be too.

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Question of the day focuses on “zero tolerance”

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 13: The NFL shield is painted in gold and black after a game between the Cleveland Browns and the New York Jets  at MetLife Stadium on September 13, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The new color scheme is to commemorate this years' Super Bowl witch will be the 50th edition. (Photo by Rich Schultz /Getty Images) Getty Images

It’s one thing to say that an NFL team applies a “zero tolerance” approach, in one or more various contexts, as to the players who aren’t critical to the effort to win games. It’s quite another to apply “zero tolerance” to key players or other employees.

Which gives rise to Friday’s question of the day for PFT Live: Do you want your favorite team to apply a “zero tolerance” policy on any issue — domestic violence, drugs, weapons, or any other type of criminal conduct?

By “zero tolerance,” we mean true “zero tolerance,” where any player who is determined to have crossed the line gets cut, no matter who he is. It’s easy to take a position in the abstract; it’s harder when considering what it could mean based on which players or non-players find themselves in trouble.

So vote and then comment and then tune in for Friday’s edition of PFT Live, which gets rolling at 6:00 a.m. ET on NBC Sports Radio, before sliding over to NBCSN at 7:00 a.m. ET.

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Rodgers, unconventional Packers dominate second half and win

Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) celebrates a touchdown with fans during the second half of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Matt Ludtke) AP

After a slow start, the Packers finally found a way to balance keeping the ball away from the Bears with letting quarterback Aaron Rodgers throw it on almost every down.

The Bears found themselves out of gas — and without much chance to keep up. The Packers ran away in the second half and went on to win Thursday night at Lambeau Field, 26-10.

Rodgers set a franchise record with 39 completions. He was 39-of-56 for 326 yards and three touchdowns.

The Bears actually led, 10-6, a few plays into the third quarter on a Leonard Floyd sack and fumble recovery before the Packers finally got their offense going. After managing two field goals in the first half, the Packers had scoring drives in the second half that covered 74, 88 and 85 yards, respectively.

Davante Adams caught a pair of touchdown passes from Rodgers. Adams ended up catching 13 passes for 132 yards, Randall Cobb had 11 catches for 95 yards and a touchdown and Ty Montgomery played both running back and wide receiver. Mongtomery had 60 yards rushing and 66 yards receiving on 10 catches.

Rodgers had his first 300-yard passing game since Week 10 last season. Adams’ 13 receptions tied for the second-most in team history in a single game, and three receivers from the same team had at least 10 catches in the same game for the first time since 1994.

The Packers didn’t have a true running back available after rookie Don Jackson was hurt, leaving Montgomery to both run and play wide receiver. Knile Davis played a little in mop-up time, but he’s still learning the offense after being acquired in a trade earlier this week.

The 88-yard scoring drive was the longest of the season for the Packers.

Matt Barkley finished the game at quarterback for the Bears after Brian Hoyer suffered a broken left arm in the second quarter. Barkley’s first completed pass was his first completion in a regular season game since 2013, and he was picked off twice in the fourth quarter.

The Bears were dreadful offensively, managing just 189 total yards. The Packers had the ball for 38:55 and had a 32-13 advantage in first downs.

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Adams gives Packers some breathing room

Chicago Bears cornerback DeVante Bausby (20) tackles Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer) AP

The Packers finally have generated some offense, and they hold a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter.

Davante Adams has caught a pair of second half touchdown passes from Aaron Rodgers for the Packers, who lead 20-10 after trailing 10-6.

Adams and Ty Montgomery have accounted for a bunch of the Green Bay offense. The Packers don’t have a true running back available after rookie Don Jackson was hurt, leaving Montgomery to both run and play wide receiver.

Early in the fourth quarter, Montgomery has 56 rushing yards and 59 receiving yards. Adams has 12 catches for 116 yards. The second touchdown drive covered 88 yards, the longest of the season for the Packers.

The Bears are struggling to get off the field. Matt Barkley is at quarterback after Brian Hoyer suffered a broken left arm in the second quarter. The Bears’ only touchdown came on a fumble recovery by rookie pass rusher Leonard Floyd.

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Hoyer has broken arm; both teams finally have touchdowns

Chicago Bears quarterback Brian Hoyer (2) leaves the game with trainers during the first half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers, Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Matt Ludtke) AP

Bears quarterback Brian Hoyer broke his left arm in the second quarter Thursday night, Bears coach John Fox told CBS sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson.

The Packers lead, 13-10, in the third quarter after an Aaron Rodgers touchdown pass to Davante Adams. The Bears took a 10-6 lead less than a minute into the second half after rookie pass rusher Leonard Floyd sacked Aaron Rodgers in the end zone, then recovered Rodgers’ fumble.

It was the Bears’ first defensive touchdown in 35 games. Floyd has two sacks on the night.

It was 6-3, Packers, at halftime. Hoyer was replaced by Matt Barkley in the second quarter after landing awkwardly when he was hit by both Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers on the Packers while releasing a pass.

Bears guard Kyle Long is questionable to return due to an arm injury. Packers rookie running back Don Jackson is also out with a hand injury, leaving wide receiver Ty Montgomery as the Packers’ top option at running back. Packers wide receiver Jordy Nelson limped off early in the third quarter.

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