Harbaugh okay after heart issue

SAN FRANCISCO — 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh had an appointment Tuesday for a follow-up evaluation with doctors after having a minor procedure last Thursday for an irregular heartbeat.

The team canceled Harbaugh's scheduled media conference call minutes before it was to begin Tuesday, a day after San Francisco's 32-7 victory over Chicago, but gave no indication that there is anything of further concern with Harbaugh's health. Harbaugh is scheduled for a routine news conference today.

Harbaugh, the reigning coach of the year who turns 49 next month, was candid about the "cardiovert" — an electrical shocking of the heart to treat an irregular heartbeat and restore its rhythm to normal — that was done at Stanford Hospital. He has had the condition for most of his life, he said, and was told to improve his diet and cut back on caffeine.

In the 49ers' rout of the Bears, backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick led the way with starter Alex Smith out with a concussion.

So Harbaugh could face a tough decision on whom to start under center Sunday against the Saints.

Kaepernick went 16-for-23 for 243 yards, two touchdowns and a rating of 133.1 in his first start.

"Thought Colin did an outstanding job," Harbaugh said after the game. "Poise in the pocket, pushing the ball and throwing with accuracy. Did a nice job running the game plan. Everything he did was exemplary, again."

Burress rejoins Steelers

PITTSBURGH — The Steelers brought back veteran wide receiver Plaxico Burress to provide depth at a position decimated by injuries. Burress, 35, who hasn't played since the end of the 2011 season as a member of the Jets, impressed coach Mike Tomlin and general manager Kevin Colbert at a brief workout.

SUSPENSION OVERTURNED: Ravens safety Ed Reed avoided a one-game suspension for late hits after an appeal. He instead will be fined $50,000. Reed was suspended without pay Monday by NFL vice president of football operations Merton Hanks for his third violation in three seasons of the rule prohibiting helmet-to-helmet hits on defenseless players.

BEARS: Quarterback Jay Cutler says he is not sure if he will play this week after missing Monday's loss because of a concussion. … Rookie receiver Alshon Jeffrey is expected to miss 2-4 weeks after arthroscopic knee surgery, which is scheduled today.

DOLPHINS: Tight end Kyle Miller was awarded to them off of waivers, and former Florida receiver Jabar Gaffney was waived.

JAGUARS: They signed receiver Jordan Shipley, who played briefly for the Bucs this season, and waived fullback Will Ta'ufo'ou.

PANTHERS: They signed former Florida State kicker Graham Gano and waived Justin Medlock.

PATRIOTS: Tight end Aaron Hernandez, who has missed much of this season with an ankle injury, should play Thursday against the Jets, NFL Network reported.

SEAHAWKS: Rookie safety Winston Guy was suspended four games without pay for violating league policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Harbaugh okay after heart issue 11/20/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 21, 2012 12:08am]

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