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Mirer Excited To Be Bears’ Starting Qb

Rick Mirer is in and Erik Kramer is out as the Chicago Bears desperately try to salvage their season.

“This is not a situation that Erik has been singled out. It’s a situation that we’re 0-3, as everybody knows, and we’re struggling on offense,” coach Dave Wannstedt said Monday in announcing the change..

Mirer, the lowest-ranked passer in the NFL last season, was acquired in February from Seattle and was signed to a three-year, $10 million contract. But he hadn’t played until last Sunday, when he replaced Kramer in the third quarter of the Bears’ 32-7 loss to the Detroit Lions.

“I’m excited. I was brought here to help this team win games, and if I’m not playing, I can’t do that,” said Mirer, the second overall pick in the 1993 draft, who has struggled since a promising rookie year with Seattle. Mirer was 10 of 21 for 90 yards, with an interception and a lost fumble against Detroit.

Humphries in charge

Stan Humphries remains the San Diego Chargers’ starting quarterback despite three fumbles in Sunday’s home opener.

Jim Everett finished the game, leading to speculation that coach Kevin Gilbride would bench Humphries for this Sunday’s game at Seattle. Humphries will start, Gilbride said Monday. Whether he finishes is anyone’s guess.

Stadium plan

New England Patriots fans would help pay for a new downtown Providence football stadium by paying up to $750 for seat “licenses,” which would give them the permanent right to buy season tickets. The seat licenses are seen by Rhode Island’s governor and the Patriots as a key element in the potential deal to build a $250 million to $300 million stadium.

The new stadium would seat 68,000 fans. About 58,000 seats would be subject to license fees, with the majority costing $750 or less.

Butler to play

All-Pro strong safety LeRoy Butler of the Green Bay Packers said he plans on playing Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings even with a torn right biceps muscle.

Bruce sidelined

The Rams’ Isaac Bruce lasted only a few plays in his first start Sunday against Denver before reinjuring his hamstring, and could be out another two games. Bruce isn’t expected to be ready to play again until Oct. 12 against San Francisco.

Chandler hopeful

For two straight weeks, Atlanta Falcons quarterback Chris Chandler has been knocked out of the game by hits that drew roughing penalties. The latest left Chandler with a bruised sternum.

“It feels better than last night,” said Chandler. “It’s just sore and stiff. We’ll see what it’s like on Wednesday after two days of treatment.”