And I thought the Bears locker room in Denver was quiet after Sunday’s loss. On Wednesday, the Chicago players and coaches were trying to deal with the mess that wide receiver and special teams player Sam Hurd had brought down upon them, and it was clearly dragging them down even further.

And I thought the Bears locker room in Denver was quiet after Sunday’s loss. On Wednesday, the Chicago players and coaches were trying to deal with the mess that wide receiver and special teams player Sam Hurd had brought down upon them, and it was clearly dragging them down even further.

Hurd was arrested Wednesday night in a drug sting, and his friends and teammates were slowly learning the details about who Hurd really was on Thursday morning. They all insisted they were shocked and were having trouble coming to grips with it all.

“It’s tough for me, just because I’m not into drugs or anything like that,” fellow wide receiver Roy Williams said. “He has his family, and that’s a choice that he made, and there’s consequences with the choices that you make.”

Time to replace ST captain

Hurd was a rarely used wide receiver for the Bears, but he was a key cog to the team’s dominant special teams unit, including the punt-team captain. Hurd will not be missed by the offense, but his absence will be felt in special teams.

Cutler, Forte may be back soon

Running back Matt Forte (knee) is close to returning to practice, and there was talk around the media room at Halas Hall that quarterback Jay Cutler (thumb) is already doing some light throwing. I’m going to go as far as to say they could play on Christmas Day against Green Bay — if Caleb Hanie and Marion Barber can pull it together and get a win this weekend. With new and old distractions still swirling around the team,  that won’t be an easy step.

Tillman still resting

Cornerback Charles Tillman was walking around the locker room without a limp, but he did not practice again Thursday as he battles a knee injury. Henry Melton (shin), Cutler and Forte were the only other Bears who did not practice and head coach Lovie Smith is optimistic that everybody else will play Sunday.

Stat of the week

The Bears are 2-for-24 on third down since RB Matt Forte injured his knee in the first quarter of the Kansas City game.

Quote of the week

Head coach Lovie Smith, on what he told his team about the arrest of Sam Hurd: “A little bit with the team, but for us it has to be a regular work day. I talked to the team briefly, but by the time I had a chance to talk to everyone, with news media and everything today, things got out pretty quickly. They know what’s going on.”

Reach staff reporter Jay Taft at 815-987-1384 or jtaft@rrstar.com.