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Here We Go Again

By Benjy Lipsman in News on Aug 15, 2005 3:42PM

Chicagoist knows it OK to make mistakes so long as we use them as learning experiences. That's what we heard from parents, teachers and bosses through the years. Unfortunately, the Bears brass didn't seem to learn that lesson.

Last year's fiasco of a season resulted primarily because the team lacked capable backups at quarterback when Rex Grossman went down in week 3 with torn knee ligaments. Bears fans endured watching Jonathan Quinn, Craig Krenzel and Chad Hutchinson pretend to be professional QBs. But they didn't fool anybody and the Bears finished the year 4-12, with the worst offense in the NFL.

This year, we don't even get Grossman for those first couple weeks because he broke his ankle in Friday's pre-season game against the St. Louis Rams. Following surgery on Monday, Grossman is expected to be out 3-4 months That means the Bears will be playing Plan B (or C or D) at QB until at least November and it's not unlikely Grossman could be out all season. So again the Bears are forced to look down the bench for a field general, and again it's a scary sight. While Quinn and Krenzel are gone, Hutchinson remains. For now he's the new #1 on the depth chart. When Grossman went down, they also had rookie Kyle Orton and journeyman Kurt Kittner on the roster. Not an encouraging situation.

During the immediate aftermath of Grossman's injury, Bears GM Jerry Angelo stood firm on his personnel desicions at QB. During the off-season, the Bears brought in Kurt Warner, Brad Johnson and Jay Fiedler but never made serious offers to any of them. "We're going with the hand we dealt ourselves," Angelo said. "The good news is we have one month until the opener and [offensive coordinator] Ron Turner is here. We have confidence in him..."

Even with a month before the opener, Chicagoist would feel a little better about the season with Warner the new starter. But it's obviously too late for that.

But while Angelo said one thing Friday night, the Bears were busy shopping for another QB. And who was still looking for a job at this point in the pre-season? On Saturday, The Trib mentioned that the best QB's available included Jeff George, Jeff Blake, Vinny Testaverde, Quincy Carter, Tim Couch, Shaun King and Brock Huard. The Bears looked at half those guys last year, passing on a couple and signing George at one point. They don't look any more appealing this year.

This time around, they chose to sign Jeff Blake -- who spent 2004 backing up Donavan McNabb in Philly. While the Bears reiterated that the starting job is Hutchinson's, there is some comfort in having a 13-year veteran on the bench rather than two guys with a combined 7 games on NFL experience.

On the other hand, Chicagoist would like to see what Orton can do. The media in town has already signed off on the Rex Grossman era in Chicago, so do the Bears look to see whether Orton's the QB of the future? Best case scenario, maybe we have this year's Ben Roethlisberger. Worst case scenario, he can't get the job done and the Bears horrible season means they can draft Matt Leinart in the 2006 draft.

Photo via Yahoo!News