There was a moment during John Fox’s post game press conference following the Chicago Bears most recent beating — a 29-7 manhandling by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers — where he seemed caught between blind devotion and pure delusion.
After Mike Glennon’s three first-half turnovers, Fox managed to place blame on everyone but the player who deserved it most: Mike Glennon.
“No, I don’t think in any way you can pin that on the quarterback,” Fox said. “Everybody had their hand in that.”
You mean that red zone interception, that pick six, and that fumble — where the ball was firmly in Glennon’s hands — was in no way the quarterback’s fault?
Fox has lost it. He lost the game. He lost his sanity. And, if he continues at this rate, he’ll lose his team.
When Fox was asked about whether rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky would get his first start in next Sunday’s contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers, he immediately dismissed the notion with a simple, “No.”
Careful, Foxy. Your job is on the line here.
Speaking as one of the poor, unfortunate, tortured, and sunburnt fans in attendance for one of the Bears’ worst performances in recent history, there were cries for the Bears to “Play the kid” and “Put Mitch Trubisky in, damn it!” well before halftime. And after Glennon’s atrocious first half performance, us idiots actually believed that might happen.
Surprise, surprise, it didn’t.
Not only did Trubisky continue to watch from the sidelines as Glennon put on a clinic of “What Not to Do As A Quarterback” for his future successor, but Fox admitted that there was never discussion of making the move.
Whereas, in contrast, the Houston Texans elected to do just that in Week 1 after Tom Savage stunk it up. They inserted rookie DeShaun Watson into a game that was already lost, but they watched as he breathed life and inspired hope into a team that carried over into Week 2 and Watson’s first NFL start.
Should the Bears have started Trubisky in the second half?
I can see it from both sides. I was clamoring for the Bears to start Trubisky in the second half knowing that the kid with the ability to create something out of nothing couldn’t and wouldn’t do worse than the highest paid backup quarterback masquerading as a starter. But I also could see how putting Trubisky into a 26-0 deficit, on the road, against a Buccaneers defense that was hungry for flesh wasn’t the most ideal of circumstances.
But if the Bears are waiting for the perfect circumstances to play Trubisky, let’s be honest, it’s not going to be 2017. Hell, if Trubisky can’t handle the rough circumstances of the NFL then he certainly wasn’t worthy of the Bears’ No. 2 overall pick.
But if there’s anything that Trubisky has proven in his short preseason stint, it’s that he doesn’t get rattled. He can handle the good, the bad, and the unexpected. It’s just one of the many appealing aspects that Trubisky possesses that gives delusional Bears fans, like myself, hope that we’ve finally got our guy. This guy might just be our savior.
So when Trubisky didn’t get into the second half, yes, I was pissed. But I was also relieved. I started saying to the Bears fans around me, “Starting Trubisky at home against the Steelers might be best at this point.” I was disappointed, but not angry because I, like most people with common sense, believed that it was a forgone conclusion that Trubisky would get the start next week.
But lest we forget the Bears lack common sense.
If there was any sliver of hope that the Bears would finally hand the keys over to Trubisky in Week 3, those hopes were shattered when Fox, without second thought (possibly with Ryan Pace whispering in his ear), dismissed the idea of Trubisky starting against the Steelers. That was until Fox proved that he’s content with mediocrity, hell, he’s content with ass-whoopings that continue to define a winless September for the Bears dating back to 2014.
Why, oh why, should we have expected anything different with Fox?
Hell, maybe we’re the delusional ones at this point.
But even if Fox is dumb enough not to realize that not only should Glennon’s career in Chicago come to an immediate and abrupt end or that Trubisky, clearly, even without playing a regular season snap in the NFL gives his team the best chance to win, there’s no denying what fans saw on Sunday or what sports writers saw or what the Bears players themselves began or continued to realize: Glennon isn’t the answer.
It’s Trubisky time.
Who’s to say that Trubisky would’ve fared much better than Glennon? Hell, Trubisky might’ve had a rough start to his young NFL career, but his ceiling is infinitely higher than Glennon’s. And why struggle with a veteran placeholder under center instead of struggle with your young franchise quarterback?
Young quarterbacks struggle. It’s what they do. It’s how they learn. It’s how they perfect their craft as they move forward in their careers. Plenty of young quarterbacks have started near immediately and struggled — and those same quarterbacks built solid careers. Mistakes are opportunities for growth. Unless you’re a “veteran” quarterback who hasn’t started since 2014 that resembles a rookie more than the actual rookie quarterback on the team.
Sure, the Bears offensive line resembled a shuffle board. Sure, the Bears infinite lack of talent at the wide receiver position continues to baffle me to the point of exhaustion. But, in the end, you can only work with what you’re given. And, you hope and you pray, that management helps you out. That’s what you’re supposed to do: You build a team around your young stud.
But right now, the Bears have what they have. Mostly because Pace failed to address holes on this roster after letting names like Alshon Jeffery and Martellus Bennett walk over the past couple years. And, yes, your young quarterback is going to have to deal with those deficiencies this season. And, yes, your young quarterback can handle it. He’s a big boy. Let him play with the big boys.
Enough is enough. We’ve seen two games too many of Glennon to know that he’s not the answer. To know that he doesn’t give this team the best chance to win. To know that Trubisky is the answer.
No, Trubisky isn’t going to remedy every problem on the Bears — because, honestly, those problems extend past the guy under center. But Trubisky represents your future. And, God it’s cliche, but that future is now. The time has come. It’s Trubisky’s time.
Let’s just hope the Bears realize that sooner rather than later. Otherwise their delusion is going to turn into hopelessness.
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