Teams need a pecking order when they open camp, because they start out in 7 on 7s and 11 on 11s from day one. They use the off season, voluntary work outs, and the OTAs to learn the playbook, so that once camp opens up the players already have an understanding of what their playbooks entail, and an understanding of what the coaches expect of them. Teams need a set first, second, and third string so their drills and team sessions run fluidly.
But things can change.
The Chicago Bears were correct in naming Mike Glennon the starter, because he was signed to man that position, and he’s been with the team longer than the kid they drafted. His limited NFL experience gave him the leg up on the rookie, but eventually talent sorts itself out. Glennon wasn’t gifted his job, he had the playbook longer and a better understanding of NFL defenses, so opening up with him as the #1 was the logical decision.
But that charade is over.
Sure, it’s only two preseason games, and sure, Glennon has been with the ones, while rookie Mitchell Trubisky has been mostly with the threes, but has Glennon done anything to stand out during his time?
Has Glennon even done anything to separate himself from Trubisky in training camp?
I could see if Glennon was lighting it up in practice, or playing smart mistake free football during preseason, but that’s not happening. He’s had some bad throws. He’s missed some wide open receivers. His ball placement isn’t that hot. He looks very mechanical back there, and part of that is just because he’s not that great an athlete, but there are plenty of poor athletes that have had success at quarterback.
If I’m in a rebuild, like the Bears are, and there isn’t a drastic gap in play between Glennon and Trubisky, then you play the rookie.
Glennon may have committed more of the playbook to memory, but if he can’t execute the playbook, does it matter?
The mental gap between the two players may be wide, with Glennon’s four years as a pro giving him the edge, but from a talent standpoint, Trubisky has Glennon beat by a magnificent mile.
Head coach John Fox and general manager Ryan Pace may have a plan in place with how to bring along the rookie, but plans can change. It happens all the time in the NFL. The money Glennon received doesn’t guarantee him the starting gig, it only guaranteed that he’d have the first crack at winning it.
He’s had his chance, and he hasn’t distanced himself from Trubisky.
In Arizona, Glennon looked better than his horrific week one against Denver, but I hope you realize that a passer rating of 0.1 would have been an improvement over the goose egg he laid against the Broncos. Fox called Glennon’s night a “big improvement," and he continued by saying, "We had a very limited look in Week 1. I thought the whole offense responded, including Mike.”
What did you guys expect Fox to say? Fox is a players coach. You aren’t going to hear him disparage one of his guys through the media.
Through two preseason games, Glennon has a 48.4 passer rating, on 57.7% passing, with 1 TD and 2 interceptions. Trubisky has a 111.4 passer rating, on 72.7% passing, with no interceptions and 2 TD passes.
I think at the very least, Trubisky has earned a move up the depth chart, to see what he can do with better players surrounding him. This week at practice should be interesting as they prepare for the “dress rehearsal” game against the Tennessee Titans, and Trubisky should be getting more reps with the twos, and a few reps with the ones.
He’s earned that.
Trubisky hasn’t been perfect. He’s missed some reads and he’s nearly thrown some interceptions, but he’s a rookie. Glennon is making the same types of mistakes, so why not play the kid?