There has been a lot of talk about what the Bears should do at quarterback, from getting rid of Jay Cutler, to trading for Jimmy Garoppolo, and everything in between. My idea is simple, and it’s not really original or unprecedented: Draft two.
That’s right. The last 3 general managers who have been given charge of the Bears operations have all preached the QB was the most important position. I give some credit to former GM Jerry Angelo, he did bring in a few QBs, draft a couple, and ultimately, traded for Jay Cutler, who at the moment, is still on the roster. Now you can definitely say the quality of those QBs were sub par at best. From Craig Krenzel, to Henry Burris, to a washed up Kordell Stewart. He at least made an effort. Marc Trestman simply kept who he had, and he had some success with both Jay Cutler and Josh McCown. He ultimately chose to go with Cutler, and Phil Emery signed him to a horrible (first 3 years) 7 year contract. The move to make (and I said it at the time) was to franchise Jay, and see what he did in year 2.
Ryan Pace has talked a lot about the QB and how important it was, yet he did not draft one in his first two years as GM. He did sign Tim Shaw and Brian Hoyer, who both looked good at times. He then went out and got Matt Barkley from Arizona when Jay went down yet again. Barkley looked pretty good in his first 4+ games, but then either reality set in, or teams simply game planned a little. Which brings us to their current situation.
Rumors are Jay Cutler was being “shopped”, and most likely will be cut. His contract however has no guaranteed money left in it, and is pretty team friendly for current standards. This could make it a little more attractive to deal to a team who is interested. Cutler is all but done with his tenure as a Chicago Bear. Now what do you do?
As I said at the top, Garoppolo is the talk of the town. Most fans and sports enthusiasts want the Bears to trade for the Patriots backup QB. Historically, this is a bad move. I’m not sure you can fill up one hand with the times this has actually worked out. For every Brett Favre, there are 5 Scott Mitchell’s. For every Matt Hasslebeck there are a half-dozen Matt Flynn’s (who cashed in with 2 teams!). Trading coveted draft picks, then having to sign Garoppolo to a long term deal is just not where the Bears are. They need every pick, and then some. If the only piece to the puzzle left was the QB, I would say roll the dice. That’s just not the case.
My philosophy is easy: Keep drafting QBs until you get it right. I would start with drafting 2 this year, and bringing back 2 of the three QBs you have on the roster right now. Conner Shaw, Brian Hoyer or Matt Barkley. Hoyer is probably the most stable, although his durability is in serious question. Shaw has probably the most upside. I don’t want to hear this year’s QB crop is not great. So what? How great was it when Alex Smith and Aaron Rodgers were drafted? So good that Rodgers fell to 25 where Green Bay snatched him up. Even the experts are wrong more than 50% of the time. That’s another article.
Another way to go (in addition to drafting at least 1 QB) is to sign a free agent QB. I believe Tampa Bay QB Mike Glennon is about to be a free agent. Glennon isn’t as sexy a prospect as a Jimmy Garoppolo, but he has played 21 games in the NFL (18 starts) and was decent (30 TDs, 15 INT, 59% completion %). He won’t cost you anywhere near Garoppolo though. He’s 27 years old, and still probably coachable. He reminds me of a young Brad Johnson.
Call me crazy, but I am really excited/intrigued at the Bears drafting a QB (or two). I still have faith in Ryan Pace. He was with the Saints and saw what Drew Brees can do. Is there a Drew Brees in this years draft class? I don’t know. Nobody does. That’s why you increase your odds by drafting more than one. You also use other picks on building around the QB. My best case scenario is that they trade down from #3 overall and at least pick up 1 extra pick. I’m also hoping they can sign a free agent wide receiver such as Cleveland free agent Terrelle Pryor Sr. What do you think the Bears should do? Feel free to leave a comment in the space down under!