“Has the physical tools, but inconsistent, particularly in the clutch, mostly due to a lack of poise. He’s not comfortable reading defenses and consequently locks on to a favorite or predetermined target that may or may not be the right choice. The less he’s asked to see the better he is. A better half-field general than a full-field one. This will be his make-or-break year. Needs to be his biggest critic and hold himself accountable.’’
The player that the author the piece, Doug Farrar, picked was a huge bust – quarterback Cade McNown, whose pick seem to set the team back big time.
QB, Chicago Bears
The Bears are known for a great many things throughout their storied history, but developing quarterbacks isn’t one of them. Outside of Sid Luckman, a few years of Jim McMahon and Jay Cutler on his good days, it’s almost incomprehensible how many seasons Chicago has gone without even replacement-level quarterbacking. There’s a lot of epically bad personnel decisions in that equation, and the decision to take McNown with the No. 12 pick in the 1999 draft is one of the worst ones.
McNown was a holdout through most of his rookie preseason, but eventually signed a seven-year, $15 million deal with a $6 million signing bonus. There were incentives in that deal worth another $7 million—safe to say McNown at least saved the Bears money there. McNown played sparingly in his first five games, throwing his first touchdown pass (and his first two picks) against the Eagles in Week 6. Eventually, ineffectiveness and injuries forced the Bears to go in a different direction at the quarterback position. By the time he was traded to the Dolphins in 2001, McNown was reduced to fighting for Chicago’s third-string job with Danny Wuerffel.
Get a head start on the NFL season by attending Chicago Bears’ training camp at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Illinois. Hipmunk.com has affordable flights to Chicago for out of town fans. Bourbonnais is just over an hour drive from O’Hare International Airport. Hotels in Chicago starting from $69 can be reserved through Hipmunk as well.
Bears quarterback Jay Cutler trained with Kevin White, Eddie Royal and Martellus Bennett at Vanderbilt this week, Blair Sheade of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.
Cutler and the Bears receiving corp used the Vanderbilt facilities all week while training. The group finished their workouts on Wednesday and plan to fly back to Chicago to wait until July 30 training camp.
The Bears have added depth to their secondary, as the team has announced they have signed veteran cornerback Tracy Porter to a one-year deal.
Porter had been with the Redskins but was released a day after Jay Gruden said he had “flight issues” which kept him from the first day of OTAs.
Porter has also played for the Saints and Raiders, and spent a year with new Bears coach John Fox in Denver in 2012.
He was the hero for New Orleans in their Super Bowl win over Peyton Manning and the Colts, when he took a pick back to clinch their 31-17 win in Super Bowl XLII.
During that time with New Orleans, he started 60 of 68 games, recording 288 tackles, 10 interceptions and 52 pass breakups. He returned three picks for touchdowns. Porter also forced three fumbles and recovered three.
Converted Bears outside linebacker Jared Allen admitted Wednesday that his old reluctance to play in a 3-4 defense stemmed from ignorance, Jeff Dickerson of ESPN Chicago reports.
Allen publicly shot down the idea of switching from defensive end to outside linebacker while a member of the Minnesota Vikings in late 2011.
“You know what, that was a little ignorance talking, I have to be honest,” Allen said at the Bears’ organized team activity.
“I didn’t know anything about it [playing OLB]. I obviously do love the traditional [4-3 defensive end role]. I played in a Tampa 2 defense my entire career, so there is a part of me that absolutely loves putting my hand in the dirt and that individual matchup with the left tackle in run or pass, or with the tight end. But this as a football player is fun, it really is — the different styles of matchups you get and some of the one-on-one rushes it creates are really fun. Ultimately, it’s kind of the same stuff, but later in my career it’s easier on my body because I’m not technically banging every single day.”
The Bears are convinced that Allen’s best spot in the new scheme is at outside linebacker, with Fangio going as far to say that he thinks the position change can revitalize Allen’s career.
“Yeah, that is what he told me,” Allen said. “My body feels fresher because I’m not banging every single day and putting my hands on a 300-plus pounder and banging heads and that kind of stuff. I like it because it is testing my football IQ. I’ve always loved the game and have always been a student of the game. Sometimes it can get monotonous and you play the same thing over and over and see the same blocks over and over. You have to work really hard at not getting complacent with your technique. This is a totally different thought process for me and it’s really forcing me to study.
“I’m having fun with it. I know it’s just OTAs, but being out there and seeing the one-on-one matchups that I’ve been able to create and the rush angles I’ve been able to create, so it’s kind of broadening my perspective on football. For me it’s been a blast and I’m just excited to keep going.”
Former Pro Bowl running back Matt Forte confirmed on Wednesday that he will report to training camp on time despite the Chicago Bears’ refusal to extend his contract, Jeff Dickerson of ESPN Chicago reports.
“Yeah, [I’ll report to camp on time without a new deal],” Forte said.
The 29-year-old Forte can earn a maximum of $8.2 million in 2015 after he led the team in rushing yards (1,038) and receptions (102) last year. He is tops in the league in yards from scrimmage (11,431) since 2008.
“Nobody wants to play on a one-year deal, especially the uncertainty of how football is with how it goes,” Forte said. “You just figure like a guy who’s been there since day one, continues to put in hard work and has produced, you figure that that guy should be rewarded. But in this business that doesn’t always happen.”
Forte reiterated that he’s in good standing with the organization; although he does not expect to revisit contract talks with general manager Ryan Pace in the near future.
“We already visited it,” Forte said. “All I can do is talk to them about it and they can say yes or no. They said we’re not talking about that type of stuff right now, so all I can is play football. I’ve come to the realization that every run or catch that I may have might be my last in a Bears uniform, so if they don’t want to re-sign me I’ll have to play somewhere else then.
The first chance for Matt Forte to prove his worth will be the opening weekend against rival Green Bay. Tickets start at $265 for the September 13th, Sunday afternoon game. Fans in need of travel help should make sure to use our friends over at Hipmunk.com for information on cheap hotel deals near Soldier Field. Hipmunk also provides offers and special discounts on luxury hotels in Chicago, so you can find a spot no matter what type of hotel you are looking for.
The Bears continued to work quickly Wednesday to get their entire six-man draft class under contract, Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune reports.
First-round receiver Kevin White and second-round nose tackle Eddie Goldman became their fourth and fifth draftees to agree to terms, the team announced.
Exact parameters of the agreements should surface later this week, but the established rookie wage scale enables some projections.
White’s four-year contract is expected to be worth approximately $15 million, including a projected signing bonus near $10 million, in accordance with wage scale. The Bears hold an option to guarantee a fifth year of the contract for injury.
Goldman’s four-year deal is projected to be worth about $5.5 million with a signing bonus of more than $2 million.
Third-round center Hroniss Grasu is the Bears’ only unsigned draft pick. He’s expected to agree to terms by the time the Bears begin their three-day rookie camp Friday.
With the Bears wrapping up signing their draft picks, it only means it is closer to the regular season. Bears’ fans can use Hipmunk.com to attend any game, at home or on the road, with thousands of flights to and from Chicago through popular airline carriers. Hotels near Soldier Field can be booked as well for Bears fans outside the Chicago area.
The Bears have a new weapon for whatever QB is going to throw the ball this season, as the team took WVU WR Kevin White with the 6th overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Here’s a scouting report on White, who is going to add pop to an offense that lost Brandon Marshall this offseason in a trade to the Jets, who passed on White with the 5th pick.
Entering the 2014 season, White wasn’t on the radar nationally as one of the top receivers in college football. He started out his college career at Lackawanna College and transferred to West Virginia as a junior. In his first season for the Mountaineers, White had only 35 receptions for 507 yards with five touchdowns.
The senior took his game to another level in 2014 as he totaled 109 receptions for 1,447 yards and 10 touchdowns. White ripped off a series of huge games before double-coverage slowed down his production in the latter portion of the season. Still, he made an impact and moved the chains for his offense.
White was a Combine star. He checked in bigger than expected and had one of the fastest 40 times of any wide receiver. White caused a stir when he clocked a 4.35-second 40-yard dash. That was faster than expected and illustrated that White has the speed to stretch a defense vertically.
For the NFL, White is a future No. 1 receiver who could lead a potent passing attack. He has a unique combination of size and speed. White consistently achieved separation for West Virginia, yet he also made contested catches with the strength to outfight defensive backs for the ball. White can get downfield quickly while beating cornerbacks with his speed and burn defenses for long touchdowns. He’s too fast for safeties, and corners struggle to run with him as he easily gets separation out of his breaks. White is a deep-threat receiver who has the ability to work all levels of the field.
White is dangerous with the ball in his hands with the ability to take a slant to the house with his speed and open-field running skills. He ran a lot of routes that are staples of the West Coast offense, but could also fit in a vertical pro-style system. White has solid hands with good body control to work the sidelines. He will be an asset on the back-shoulder throws that are popular in the NFL.