Injuries hit a pair of division safeties

Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert

Wednesday was a tough day for two NFC North safeties: Chicago's Brandon McGowan learned he will miss the remainder of the season because of a left ankle injury and Green Bay's Atari Bigby apparently will miss at least one game because of a hamstring injury.

McGowan, who has been serving as the Bears' nickelback, will need surgery. He's likely to be replaced by Danieal Manning, according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Sun-Times. McGowan supplanted Manning in that role during the preseason but coach Lovie Smith told reporters in Chicago:

"We're very comfortable with Danieal playing. He's always been one of our guys, someone has to start. We're real comfortable, Danieal has played a lot of football around here and again we feel real comfortable with him playing again."

Bigby, meanwhile, sat out all of practice Wednesday. Coach Mike McCarthy told reporters in Green Bay: "I don't think Atari is going to make it this week."

Aaron Rouse is the most likely replacement for Bigby, but McCarthy said that Charlie Peprah will also take some practice reps.