In about three weeks, training camp will get underway for the Chicago Bears on the campus of Olivet Nazarene in Bourbonnais. This is a tense time for players, as roster spots get finalized and the ones who are not assured a spot try to prove their worth. In this installment of a series of training camp previews, I will look at important position battles that could shape the team for the future. This week, the competition for backup quarterback is the focus.
Questions surround Chicago Bears at backup QB position
One of the more intriguing story lines centers around the battle at backup quarterback. While the offensive line has no doubt improved, only allowing quarterback Jay Cutler to be sacked 19 times in 2013, questions linger about whether or not he can play his first full season with the Bears since his inaugural campaign with the team in 2009.
Last year, backup Josh McCown filled in for Cutler and was a worthy backup, posting a 3-2 record and a 13:1 touchdown-to-interception ratio. He gave hope to Bears fans as a backup, but unfortunately a deal could not be reached to bring him back. Heading into camp, the team will have their eyes peeled for a breakout performance from one of the three quarterbacks vying to be the number two QB.
Jimmy Clausen, Jordan Palmer and newly-drafted David Fales round out the quarterbacks after Cutler. Excluding Fales, that group has combined to complete a total of 167 passes in the regular season, with 157 of those coming from Clausen. While that stat alone is reason for worry, fear not. The brain trust of head coach Marc Trestman, offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer, and quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh will make sure whoever backs up Cutler is the right man for the job.
I see Palmer and Clausen as the second and third QBs, respectively. Fales will fall to the practice squad, giving him an opportunity to hone his abilities and become the quarterback the Bears hope he can be. While this may look like the potential quarterback situation for the Bears, remember that anything can happen and nothing is set in stone.