Beacon Journal staff and wire reports
Running back Delone Carter, Ohio’s Mr. Football in 2005 at Copley High School, signed a contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars that runs through the 2014 season.
A fourth-round draft pick of the Indianapolis Colts in 2011 out of Syracuse, Carter played in 26 games with the Colts before being traded to the Baltimore Ravens on Aug. 21. Since being waived by the Ravens on Aug. 30, Carter had tryouts with the Tennessee Titans, San Diego Chargers, Kansas City Chiefs, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Jaguars.
Carter takes the roster spot of running back Justin Forsett, placed on injured reserve with a foot injury. Pro Bowl running back Maurice Jones-Drew is expected to miss practice time this week with a hamstring injury.
Carter, 5-foot-9 and 232 pounds, started three games for the Colts. In his NFL career, he has rushed for 499 yards and five touchdowns and caught six passes for 31 yards. He totaled 377 rushing yards as a rookie.
— Marla Ridenour
Bears rout Cowboys
Josh McCown threw for a career-high four touchdowns, and the Chicago Bears scored on their first eight possessions to grab a share of the NFC North lead with a 45-28 victory over the Dallas Cowboys on a frigid Monday night.
The Bears (7-6) retired hall of famer Mike Ditka’s number at halftime and pulled even with Detroit in the division race on a night when the wind chill factor was below zero. Dallas (7-6) fell a game behind Philadelphia in the NFC East.
The conditions didn’t stop McCown from throwing for 348 yards or keep the Bears from running away with a lopsided victory after consecutive losses.
Healthy Griffin may sit
Mike Shanahan, still for now the coach of the Washington Redskins, made a surprising reversal Monday and said he might bench a “100 percent” healthy Robert Griffin III for the rest of the season to keep the quarterback from getting hurt.
Shanahan essentially declared it might be more beneficial for Griffin to get offseason snaps in May rather than game experience over the next three weeks. The coach, for the first time, then explicitly left open the possibility that he might not return next year, saying his future will be decided after he meets with owner Dan Snyder at the end of the season.
Gronkowski put on IR
The New England Patriots placed tight end Rob Gronkowski on injured reserve Monday with a damaged right knee.
Gronkowski was hurt midway through the third quarter of the Patriots’ 27-26 win over the Browns on Sunday when he was hit on the knee by safety T.J. Ward after a 21-yard reception.
Gronkowski suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament and damaged medial collateral ligament, a source said Monday. The source spoke on condition of anonymity because the team did not release those details. He caught touchdown passes in four consecutive games before making just two receptions for 32 yards against the Browns.
Around the league
Tyrann Mathieu’s terrific rookie NFL season has come to a premature end after the standout safety tore an ACL and sustained further damage in his left knee returning a free kick Sunday. He will undergo surgery. … Wes Welker is unlikely to suit up for Denver’s game Thursday against San Diego after leaving Sunday’s win over Tennessee with his second concussion in four games. … New York Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie has a concussion and his status for the team’s game against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday is uncertain. Coach Rex Ryan said Monday that Cromartie is going through the NFL’s mandated protocol for head injuries.