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NFL notebook: 49ers QB Smith feels injury cost him job

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By The Associated Press
Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012, 7:30 p.m.

Needless to say, San Francisco 49ers QB Alex Smith does not agree with coach Jim Harbaugh's decision to start Colin Kaepernick.

For Smith, it boils down to one thing: “I feel like the only thing I've done to lose my job is get a concussion.”

That doesn't mean he didn't see it coming.

“I knew just based off the last couple weeks, the way things have gone,” Smith said. “Didn't know what was going to happen, but knew that was a possibility.”

Harbaugh sat down with Smith and had a lengthy discussion as to why the change was being made.

That conversation didn't do anything to help ease the result for Smith, who self-reported his concussion during the game against St. Louis on Nov. 11, then again shortly before the following game against Chicago.

Murray practicing

Dallas running back DeMarco Murray is finally practicing again.

It's unknown if he'll play Sunday night against Philadelphia, and whether his six-game absence is what ails the Cowboys' running game.

Murray was a limited participant in practice Wednesday and Thursday in what coach Jason Garrett said was the most football work the second-year pro has done since spraining his right foot against Baltimore on Oct. 14.

Murray declined interviews after both practices, but did acknowledge a “good first day” in a playful exchange with reporters Wednesday.

“If he's ready to go, it will be a boost,” quarterback Tony Romo said.

Injuries pile up

Bears running back Matt Forte and cornerback Charles Tillman left with ankle injuries, and as if losing those two wasn't enough, guards Lance Louis and Chris Spencer exited with knee injuries.

Louis is out for the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee that he suffered on a blind-side hit to the head from Jared Allen as the Vikings' Antoine Winfield returned an interception.

The Bears have ruled out Hester and Spencer for this game. Forte said he expects to play this week. He practiced Thursday on a limited basis, as did Tillman.

Vick still ailing

After Michael Vick suffered a head injury in Week 11 that knocked him out of the game and allowed the Nick Foles era to begin in Philadelphia, coach Andy Reid characterized Vick's concussion as “pretty significant.”

Significant enough, certainly, to keep him out of last week's game and indefinitely into the future. The Eagles announced Thursday that Vick still hasn't reached his baseline on the imPACT test.

Titans add veteran coach

Mike Munchak has hired veteran coach Tom Moore to help the Tennessee Titans after firing offensive coordinator Chris Palmer and giving the job to Dowell Loggains.

Munchak said Thursday the 32-year-old Loggains will call the plays starting Sunday when the Titans host Houston.

Bounty-gate continues

Former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue and lawyers for the league and the players' union have wrapped up a hearing in the Saints bounties case.

Tagliabue is overseeing the latest round of player appeals in Washington. Former Saints assistant Mike Cerullo, a key witness in the NFL's investigation, was scheduled to speak Thursday. Former New Orleans defensive coordinator Gregg Williams is to participate in Friday's session.

Two Saints players who were suspended, linebacker Jonathan Vilma and defensive end Will Smith, have said they plan to attend when Williams is there. Vilma's lawyer attended the day-long hearing at an office building. Tagliabue and lawyers who attended Thursday declined comment when they left.

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