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Orton on next week: 'I'll definitely be out there'
By Bob LeGere | Daily Herald Staff

Rex Grossman comes to the sideline to talk to quarterbacks coach Pep Hamilton after calling a timeout. Backup Caleb Hanie and injured starter Kyle Orton, right, look on.


Mary Beth Nolan | Staff Photographer

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Published: 11/10/2008 12:12 AM

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Kyle Orton decided Sunday morning that his sprained ankle had not improved enough to help the Bears against Tennessee, but he could be back for Sunday's game against the Packers at Green Bay.

"It was my decision if I was going to play or not, and I didn't feel like I could be out there," said Orton, who dressed as the emergency No. 3 quarterback and stood on the sidelines observing the 21-14 loss to the Titans. "Coach (Lovie Smith) gave me up until (Sunday) morning to decide, and he said the decision was mine. I just didn't feel like I could help in any way.

"If I feel like I can help next week, I'll definitely be out there."

Orton said his right ankle continues to improve with treatment and rest, and he seemed confident of returning for the NFC North showdown in Green Bay, where a Bears victory would give them a 2-game lead over the Packers.

"I feel like I have a great chance," he said. "I'm pretty happy with where I am at right now compared to a week ago. It hurts when you put pressure on it. Hopefully we'll just continue to make the same amount of improvement this week."

Orton didn't practice last week until Friday and even then he did very little. But when the Bears practice next, on Wednesday, Smith hopes Orton can participate.

"He went out (Sunday), and he was able to do a little bit," Smith said. "Hopefully he'll be ready to go this week."

Orton didn't enjoy watching the offense struggle for just 243 total yards and 14 points, its lowest outputs of the season.

"You certainly want to be on the field, but we played a great football team today, a great defensive team, and they played well," he said. "As a unit we just didn't make enough plays."

Orton, who was 10th in the league with a 90.3 passer rating going into the Week 10 games, has not been given a timetable for his return by the team's trainers. His status is still day-to-day. "It's just been a continual process," he said. "I get there in the morning, and we evaluate it. We've seen improvement in it that's been made since the day before and we just go from there."