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NFL: San Francisco coach Harbaugh keeps quarterbacks guessing

Published November 26, 2012 9:09 pm

NFL notes • S.F. coach says he will announce decision on Sunday's starter by midweek.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Jim Harbaugh has watched each of his two quarterbacks lead the San Francisco 49ers to big wins in hostile, road environments — Alex Smith in the season opener at Green Bay's Lambeau Field back in September among others, and Colin Kaepernick on Sunday at the New Orleans Superdome.

Which one gets the ball on Sunday when the 49ers travel to St. Louis? Harbaugh is still mum on that, though he did say Monday he will formally announce his starting quarterback by midweek so the players don't have to face constant questions about what they know about the situation.

Kaepernick said he was told late Saturday in a team meeting that he would start Sunday against the Saints.

Then, on Monday, Harbaugh offered this for thought: Yes, he's keeping everybody guessing again. Sort of.

"Alex Smith is our starting quarterback. He has not done anything to lose that job," Harbaugh said. "In fact, he's playing at a very high level. Also, Colin Kaepernick, you can't categorize him as a backup quarterback, because he's started games and played very well in those games."

Harbaugh said that anything is possible this week, even using both QBs in the game.

Around the league

Lions • The NFL has decided not to suspend defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh for his actions against Houston quarterback Matt Schaub. League spokesman Greg Aiello announced the decision Monday, adding the "incident' will be reviewed for a potential fine. Suh's left cleat connected with Schaub's groin area after he threw a pass in the first quarter of last Thursday's game. The defensive tackle was on his chest after being taken down by an offensive lineman and extended his left foot to hit Schaub below the belt.

Patriots • Defensive end Jermaine Cunningham was suspended for four games without pay for violating the NFL policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Giants • Tight end Martellus Bennett broke the fall of a man who fell over a railing trying to grab a glove the player was handing to a child after Sunday night's win over Green Bay. The fan was quickly surrounded by New Jersey state troopers and led away. He did not appear to be hurt in the fall from the lowest level of seating at MetLife Stadium, a distance of about 10 feet. Bennett said the child ducked as the man reached over him, causing the man to fall over the railing.

"I just caught him. It wasn't that big of a deal," Bennett said Monday.