The biggest question mark for the Bears going forward is the QB position. Who is best suited to lead the current team?
Breaking down the positives and negatives of the available QB candidates is a depressing endeavor. There is no perfect candidate. Some are horrible, some are old, some are inexperienced, and a few are all of the above. Now that Connor Shaw is locked in as a backup, or third-stringer, the Chicago Bears still need to figure out the starter.
Let’s get this out of the way. He’s probably the best available QB not named Kirk Cousins, but Cutler’s ship has sailed in Chicago. There is too much animosity. Too much division. An above average starter with a decent price range is the right target, but the Chicago front office clearly doesn’t want him. Ryan Pace and John Fox need a fresh start with “their guy.”
Remember when Brian Hoyer went down against Green Bay last year, and Barkley came into the game causing excitement? Then he preceded to throw two picks in limited action for the Chicago Bears. Everyone forgave him, saying it was first game jitters. “Let him settle in,” everyone said. Then he threw for three TDs against the Titans, and even though he threw two more INTs most were joyously proclaiming him the guaranteed starter, “You have to break a few eggs to make an omelet!” Five games, five touchdowns, and ten interceptions later, everyone knows why he couldn’t wrestle the job away from Nick Foles in Philly, and why Brian Hoyer was the #2 in Chicago.
Speaking of all the interceptions Matt Barkley threw last year, guess who threw more? Ryan Fitzpatrick, despite the manliness of his beard, threw the ball away the majority of the year for the Jets. Keep in mind he was handing off to Matt Forte and throwing to Brandon Marshall, two players many are saying the Bears should have never let leave Chicago. Aside from his generosity with the football, Fitzpatrick is also an older option at 34, and not the right guy to help the Bears.
Short and sweet, Geno couldn’t even earn the starting gig while Fitzpatrick was actively sabotaging the Jets. Besides, the only Geno that belongs in Chicago is the one that spells the name with an “i” instead of an “e,” and serves up a mean deep dish pizza.
It sucks. I don’t like it.
The thoughts of the Bears picking up Gabbert to lead the team, after he was unable to hold off
Kaepernick as the starter in San Francisco, can most aptly be summed up by his quote when he learned about his benching, “It sucks. I don’t like it.”
Besides, the only time he looked really good was against the Bears’ secondary. Not a huge accomplishment.
Kaepernick is unlikely to come into play for two reasons. First, his market will likely be $14M. That’s a bit rich for a risky free agent. Second, the Bears are not typically a team that deals with controversy well. Players get the axe quickly if they step out of line. Besides that, absolutely everyone knows his recent decision to stand during the National Anthem next year is entirely contrived and entirely driven by his free agency.
Third-stringer behind Kaepernick and Gabbert, and the following is probably his most accurate highlight video online.
Season ending herniated disk surgery in 2013. A broken transverse processes in 2014 ended that season. Ultimately, a season-ending clavicle surgery in 2015. No shocker the following year, a season-ending compression fracture in 2016.
Compression fractures are common in the elderly with weak bones but are pretty rare in young athletes
If the Bears want to go with a mid-30s QB with an injury history, they should probably keep Jay Cutler. The injuries Romo has sustained are far more extensive and substantial, and his history of back injuries are a near certainty he’ll miss future games.
Glennon appears to be the most recent hot topic for Chicago Bears’ rumor mills. This is a guy who couldn’t beat out Josh Freeman (no longer in the NFL) in 2013, lost the starting QB battle to Josh McCown in 2014, was viewed as nothing more than a backup when Tampa Bay drafted Jameis Winston for the 2015 season, and pretty much sat the bench last year. Given the recent Tampa $8M per year offer Glennon turned down, it’s pretty clear he’s expecting more. Nearly $10M per year for a guy who can’t beat out anyone named Josh? No thanks.
Averaging over 17 interceptions per season as a full-time starter may be his most damning flaw, but Sanchez also clearly lacks the situational awareness required to be a starting QB.
At this point in his career, it’s clear who Tyrod Taylor is. Per his “T-Mobile” nickname, he’s a guy who is an average QB, has some accuracy issues, and will take off running a bit quickly for the liking of most. He’s pretty safe with the football, so that would make Chicago Bears’ fans happy. His mobility is also a positive, since fans have wanted the Bears to get their QB into space for several years now. But to Buffalo fans he’s polarizing, some may even say hated (caution when searching!). That should be cause for concern considering the Bears already know about polarizing, under-performing QBs.
Everyone’s favorite franchise savior. Nevermind the fact that he’s only really had two starts. Or that he’s on the best run franchise in the NFL. Or that his head coach is widely considered the best in the NFL.
Disregard the other backups who have left New England only to underperform outside of the coach and the system. Remember when Ryan Mallet was a hot name for a hot second? How’s Matt Cassel doing? And don’t forget that the team seemingly is fine with letting him go, despite the fact their QB, regardless of how great he is, is nearly 40. That makes complete sense. Do NOT trust “The Hoodie.”
For those who don’t sneer at the aforementioned, just remember the worst part about pursuing Garoppolo is the price tag. He’ll cost picks, and then he’ll want a big contract if he remotely does well on his current contract’s one remaining year. Imagine he doesn’t want to play for the Chicago Bears, and ultimately the lost picks are for a rental? Finally, it’s about time the Bears develop a QB instead of getting the raw end of a trade.
He would cost more than even Garoppolo due to the franchise tag. A team like the Bears can’t afford to give up picks when so many positions need improvement. He may have been the best option, but that moment has passed.
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Speaking of former New England backups, the Chicago Bears had one on the roster last year. And barring a 1st round QB draft pick, he should be starting in 2017. First and foremost, Hoyer’s stats last year are pretty difficult to ignore. In four starts he had 6 TDs, 0 Interceptions, over 1300 yards, and the offense was clicking. It’s doubtful he would have put up similar stats over the course of an entire year, but it’s not difficult to imagine a year of 3500-4000 yards, 20 TDs, and minimal interceptions. Isn’t a game-manager QB what the Bears need right now anyway?
Some may have more promise, but their prices are going to be beyond their value. For a young team building a nucleus of core players, the Chicago Bears need a sound leader, a guy who can move the offense, a smart QB who can bridge the gap and perhaps mentor a younger player, and someone who won’t have demoralizing turnovers. Of the available QB options, Brian Hoyer provides the best bang for the buck.