Exit Grossman, Enter Orton, Probably Won’t Matter One Way or the Other

Well, now that Kyle Orton has been named the starting quarterback for the Bears season opener, it would be nice to say “finally, all the pieces are in place, and we’re on track to go to the Super Bowl again!”.

Delusional, but nice to say.

Barry Rozner, as usual, has an excellent column on all this: “You’ve got to ask … was this really a job worth winning?”

My thoughts exactly.

Here’s Rozner, summarizing it well:

As for Orton, it figures that when they finally give him a shot at leading the team, he’s got no team to lead.

Orton will be a decent NFL quarterback someday, but that day probably won’t be this year, with this team, this offense and, specifically, this dreadful offensive line.

I also liked this part:

At least, he may give special teams and defense a chance to win a few games.

This is small consolation for Orton and for Bears fans, who are facing what has a chance to be a truly horrific offensive season.

Special teams and defense ought to do their jobs, but that’s assuming the health of Devin Hester, Brian Urlacher, Tommie Harris and Mike Brown.

Subtract any of them, and the entire program begins to look like Division III.

But Orton can’t worry about all that. He has won a job almost no one would want, and his celebration could last as long as it takes to drop back and pass.

The jailbreak may be only that far away.

I hate to say this, but this could easily be one of the worst offenses the Bears have put on the field in the last 40 years. I could be wrong, and I sincerely hope I am, but all the pieces are in place for a real Sunday afternoon horror show: first, and most important, an offensive line that was old and slow last year and has lost two starters, and second, unproven receivers and running backs (though both have promise, if given good support at QB and O-line), and third, the well-known weaknesses of Orton and Grossman. The tight ends, at least, look like the one bright spot, again, with Desmond Clark, Greg Olsen, and huge rookie Kellen Davis.

I actually think the quarterback question is the least important issue for them going into the season. If they were strong on the line, and had proven receivers and backs, and assuming a healthy defense and more spectacular play from Hester on special teams — which is assuming alot, I know — winning 11 or 12 games and the division would be attainable. But this is Chicago, and we have to obsess over quarterbacks, even though football games are won up front.

So who knows? Predictions are just opinions — and we know how common and useful those are — but all the indications this year, at least on offense, aren’t real good.

  1. Mike said:

    I agree with the Bears decision.

    If there’s one thing I can’t stand in sports, it’s when people beat themselves. Whether it’s tennis and you’re double faulting, baseball and you’re not throwing strikes, or basketball and you’re turning the ball over because you’re not conservative enough with it… I hate when people beat themselves.

    Until Rex Grossman learns not to beat himself, you have to go with Orton. Grossman has WAY better upside… it’s not even close. But, you simply can’t have a moron who constantly fumbles and throws interceptions where there was no chance at completion.

    I predicted last year was going to be a downer and I agree with you, this year is looking even worse. Football begins and ends at the line and our offensive line doesn’t look pretty.

    The Bears have been all D for how many years now? Will it ever change? And when the offense is this bad, the D will wear down. We don’t even have Berrian! Even when the O line succeeds, who’s going to run, throw, or catch the ball? USC will have a much better offense.

  2. Yeah, I’m on the same page there. The teams that win, in any sport, are usually those that make the fewest mistakes. Other factors are needed, like ability to perform under pressure, mental toughness, etc., but eliminating mistakes is a huge key.

  3. Mike said:

    Hey, thatta boy, Kyle. Please make JBrokaw and I look like idiots. I’d be thrilled to see it.

  4. Orton did well, that’s true, and they still lost, because the defense was poor. Which tends to support my point, that this team has bigger problems than who the QB is.