ESPN’s Jon Gruden is an admitted tape junkie, and he’s not likely to find a cure for this obsession anytime soon. If the Chicago Bears’ quarterbacking in recent years won’t kick him of his habit, then perhaps nothing will.
“The Chicago Bears, the way I see it … I’ve looked at film over the last four or five years, and I’ve seen Jimmy Clausen, I’ve seen Josh McCown, I’ve seen a lot of Jay Cutler, I saw Matt Barkley, I saw Jason Campbell, I saw Mike Glennon,” Gruden told PFW by phone this weekend. “Chicago, they need someone to come through the fog here and get this franchise going.”
Monday’s forecast calls for a ray of sunshine — not by the meteorologists, mind you, but by the Bears fans who, like Gruden, have grown tired of uneven QB play. Following the Cutler era that lasted eight largely disappointing seasons, the Glennon era really never started. His magic number was also eight, which was the number of turnovers he had in four mostly poor starts.
That’s why the Bears felt compelled to allow Mitchell Trubisky to make his NFL debut on Monday night against the Minnesota Vikings. This wasn’t the timetable the Bears had drawn up initially, and it clearly had as much to do with Glennon, whose benching was “performance related” according to head coach John Fox.
Trubisky has taken an interesting path to this point. The former Mr. Ohio in football sat on the bench three years at North Carolina before getting his shot to start. After 13 games, Bears GM Ryan Pace saw enough in him to trade up a spot — and pay heavily — in a deal with the San Francisco 49ers to draft him with the second overall pick. Many Bears fans and media initially panned the move, questioning the cost of taking Trubisky after Glennon had been paid a minimum of $18.5 million for this season.
Perspectives started changing in the preseason opener, however, when Glennon threw a first-pass pick-six and Trubisky lit it up in garbage time. The excitement for the rookie only has picked up after Glennon struggled, and Gruden believes that only will grow once Trubisky finally gets his chance.