Eventually the Chicago Bears will have to decide between starting Mitchell Trubisky or Mike Glennon at quarterback, but a major decision must take place before that — how practice reps must Trubisky get? It is a fair question that requires a thoughtful answer. The Bears have put themselves in a position where they have a starting quarterback and a rookie passer who will need some attention.
Barring injury, Mike Glennon will enter into the 2017 NFL season as the starting quarterback for the Chicago Bears. That was made clear when the Bears signed him to a three-year deal, worth $45 million in free agency. Even Trubisky acknowledged (courtesy of Pro Football Talk) that Glennon was going to be the starter.
“I haven’t talked to Mike yet but I’m very excited to work with him and the rest of the quarterbacks here. Mike is the starting quarterback and I’m very excited to learn from him and the rest of the veterans on the team and I can’t wait to help the Bears win.”
Trubisky made that admission the same night that the Bears traded up one spot (courtesy of MMQB) with the San Francisco 49ers to take him No. 2 in the NFL draft. Despite not being handed the Bears’ job on his first day, the rookie quarterback cannot sulk. He has to begin his work in order to take over eventually.
To make good on their investment the Chicago Bears are expected to give Glennon every opportunity to keep the starting job for this season at least. It has been reported by USA Today that $19 million of Glennon’s deal is guaranteed money. There is speculation that $16 million of the guaranteed payment is covered in the first year of his contract.
— Chicago Tribune (@chicagotribune) May 13, 2017
Mike Glennon’s contractual status alone does not ensure that he will be the Bears’ starter, it is the fact that he has experience and upside. Just because the Bears took Trubisky so high in the NFL draft, it does not mean he will push Glennon for the starting job in the beginning. Mike Glennon’s job is safe, and given his strengths, he should remain the starter.
Glennon has a strong arm and is an accurate passer. What he lacks is mobility in the pocket. Glennon never got a chance to show any improvement with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After his rookie season, he took a backseat first to Josh McCown and then to 2015 No. 1 draft pick Jameis Winston. Glennon will be looking to prove that he is not a bridge quarterback. In the meantime, the Bears have to groom Mitchell Trubisky.
In order to get Trubisky ready for the NFL the Chicago Bears have to give him ample amount of practice reps. The more reps Trubisky gets, the better off his development will be. But it could come at the price of stunting Mike Glennon’s growth.
How will the Bears QB situation play out in 2017?
"Mike Glennon is definitely the starter"
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) May 13, 2017
Reviews about Trubisky’s rookie minicamp performance were positive after his first Bears’ practice. Bears’ offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains did his best to state the expectations (courtesy of Chicago Tribune) of his rookie quarterback.
“You get to teach these guys what an NFL practice looks like, the urgency that we’re looking for before they get with the vets next week. We need Mitch to understand that he’s a leader, (that) he’s got full command out there on the field. He needs to feel our expectations for him as a quarterback and as a player.”
That cannot happen without Trubisky getting some time with the first-string offense during practices. The Bears’ coaches have to find ways to get the rookie quarterback opportunities to work with the starters, without ruining Glennon’s development.
The perfect scenario for the Chicago Bears is for both Glennon and Trubisky become strong options at quarterback. If so, the Bears would either have two passers who can lead the team or a tradable asset. If Mike Glennon winds up wowing the Bears by having an impressive season, they could possibly trade him for a draft pick.
The trade market for solid young quarterbacks may have been set by the Minnesota Vikings, who last year traded a first round pick for Sam Bradford. In this case, Glennon plays well enough for the Bears to ask for a second round pick in a deal, that is a win. Getting Mitchell Trubisky up to speed in the event that he has to step in as a starter would also be a win. It is going to be a delicate balancing act for the Chicago Bears to pull off.
[Featured Image by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images]