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Couch: If You Think It Can’t Get Worse For Bears At QB, Just Wait

Four years ago, the Chicago Bears signed Mike Glennon and had finally found their quarterback. He was replacing Jay Cutler, who was supposed to have finally been the Bears’ quarterback after they had given up on Rex Grossman, who was supposed to have been . . .

“Mike Glennon is our starting quarterback,’’ Bears general manager Ryan Pace said at the time. “And we’re fired up about that.’’

The words “fired’’ and “Ryan Pace’’ in the same paragraph sound so nice. But I digress.

A few weeks after signing Glennon, the Bears invited him to their draft day festivities to help get him ingratiated with Bears fans. Glennon, enjoying his moment, then watched on TV as Pace traded up to get the No. 2 draft choice, where he took . . . Mitch Trubisky, a quarterback. Trubisky was supposed to have been, well, you know.

The point is the Bears just don’t know what they’re doing and don’t even try to hide it sometimes. But to sign Glennon and then subject him to that is like inviting your new bride to dinner, where she sits and watches you on a date with someone else.

It’s hard to say if the Bears are doing that again now with Andy Dalton, the guy who Pace chose last week to replace Trubisky. In typical Bears fashion, they have messed this thing up big time.

Bears fans still think they’re going to get Russell Wilson. I’m not kidding. Wilson had said through his agent that he wanted to stay in Seattle, but if that didn’t work out, there were four teams he’d like to go to. One of them was Chicago.

Pace, feeling the pressure of his job, tried to throw everything he could at Seattle for Wilson. Bears fans were excited. The Bears supposedly offered three first-round draft picks, a third-rounder and two current players for Wilson.

The Seahawks have no intention of getting rid of him because he’s, you know, a superstar. But the Bears didn’t get Wilson. And now, while reports from national football writers say that Wilson still wants out and that the Bears are still interested, they’re trying a little too hard to convince their fans that Dalton is the guy.

The Bears tweeted out a photoshopped picture of Dalton in a Bears uniform about to throw a pass. Above the photo, it said this:

QB1.

“They told me I was the starter,’’ Dalton said last week when the Bears announced him. “That was one of the reasons why I wanted to come here.’’

That QB1 thing is just so galling to Bears fans, who didn’t want Dalton in the first place. To Bears fans, that QB1 thing is like watching your team do an endzone dance after your quarterback got sacked on fourth and 6.

Bears fans are already hiding their heads in their palms over Dalton and don’t need the Bears to scream this out in a hip way, like a mic drop.

The Bears have no intention of going with Dalton, by the way. He’s a backup plan. They had to get rid of Trubisky, Pace’s biggest mistake, or Bears fans would have run him out of town. Bears ownership said that Pace will be out if the team isn’t better next year, which it won’t be (goodbye, Ryan!).

In the offseason, Pace has had to spend plenty of his time dumping players to recover from his mishandling of the salary cap. That included letting go of Kyle Fuller, one of the league’s best cornerbacks, while continuing to pay backup quarterback Nick Foles.

Foles was brought in and highly overpaid last year as Pace tried to give himself some insurance in case Trubisky failed again. Trubisky then failed, so the Bears turned to Foles, who failed. And they went back to Trubisky.

Foles got a $4 million roster bonus Saturday. 

Pace is desperate now, and it’s hard to see what he could possibly offer Seattle to try to get Wilson. If he could get Wilson, the Bears would have a star quarterback for the first time in 70 years, and Pace would be a hero.

Just guessing, but I’ll say that Pace has sweetened the deal by also offering . . .

Dalton. The Seahawks will say no.

The other possibility is this: If the Bears were willing to give up three first-round picks and a third for Wilson, then maybe Pace will package those pieces and offer them as a trade to move up in the draft so he can take a quarterback.

It’s actually sad watching the Bears try to figure this out. While Pace is flailing in panic, the Chicago Bulls’ new management, Arturas Karnisovas and Marc Eversley, evaluated the team for half a season and made The Big Move Thursday.

They traded Wendell Carter, Jr., Otto Porter, Jr. (with his massive overpaid contract) and two first-round picks to the Orlando Magic for center Nikola Vucevic.

Vucevic is one of the best centers in the league, and as soon as he puts on a Bulls uniform, he’ll be their top all-time center.

It was a solid, professional, franchise-changing move done in the few months since Karnisovas and Eversley took over. Meanwhile, the Bears posted on Twitter a picture of Dalton with tousled hair, boxing gloves with the words:

Ready to rumble.

A word of advice, Andy: If Pace invites you to a draft day party, just say no thanks.

Written by Greg Couch

Greg earned the 2007 Peter Lisagor Award as the best sports columnist in the Chicagoland area for his work with the Chicago Sun-Times, where he started as a college football writer in 1997 before becoming a general columnist in 2003. He also won a Lisagor in 2016 for his commentary in RollingStone.com and The Guardian.

Couch penned articles and columns for CNN.com/Bleacher Report, AOL Fanhouse, and The Sporting News and contributed as a writer and on-air analyst for FoxSports.com and Fox Sports 1 TV. In his journalistic roles, Couch has covered the grandest stages of tennis from Wimbledon to the Olympics, among numerous national and international sporting spectacles. He also won first place awards from the U.S. Tennis Writers Association for his event coverage and column writing on the sport in 2010.

5 Comments

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  1. Carrot Top is the original Kirk Cousins. Good guy. throws a pretty spiral. has a pretty wife. nice car. can’t change a tire or anything important. kind of a poster boy for QB like its just an everyday blue collar union job 😜 have fun Chica-Go!

  2. Good stuff, Greg…and great writing. Gotta be tougher than a Chicago winter to still get emotionally involved with a team who’s been telling Bears fans for years they’re of no consequence.
    Jayzuz…release Kyle Fuller??? Sign the guy and package him to Seattle with Dalton and next year’s first and third rounders (not to mention picking up a huge chunk of Russ’ contract or re-structuring).
    Russell Wilson is the only QB on the Seahawks roster right now (having cut the other three – just for now, of course), so wouldn’t it work if they take Dalton to fill in until they can get a QB in next year’s draft? There should be 4 or 5 very good prospects. Or a free agent QB after the 2021 season?

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