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12/18/2005

KYLE ORTON: CASE CLOSED

Gee, I guess I can throw out the notes I took on how bad Kyle Orton was playing. But it was more of the same: 3rd down throws not even to the 1st down marker, passes thrown woefully short of the target, passes thrown right into defenders' hands (and thankfully dropped), passes thrown embarrassingly behind the receivers. Look, he's a rookie. He will get better and the experience was invaluable. It had to extend his NFL career.

But enough was enough. Enough of Rick Morrissey, Mike Downey, Mike North and especially Joe Theismann and anyone else who rallied for Orton and at the same time had disparaging comments for those who didn't. As if they knew so much and we were all goofy. All backing Kyle Orton, human 4-leaf clover. We're winning, he's in there, don't move him. It was all so ridiculous. It was repeated ad infinitum--"Kyle Orton is 9-4." So shallow; so lazy. That's like saying a passenger on a plane is the pilot. Kyle Orton was along for the 9-4 ride, but he wasn't steering the ship. He was the lame entertainment. Or maybe he was Gopher.

As for Theismann, his comments also echoed the "Orton's done everything they've asked of him so how can you blame him and how can you take him out" arguments. Hard to believe a guy who played in the league and has been a broadcaster for so long needs to be told this: That's the whole point. When you run on 3rd & 5 deep in your opponent's territory, it's obvious that they are not asking him to do a whole lot. And why not? They didn't ask him to try and run up points because he was incapable of doing so. So they continually shrunk the offense to make sure he didn't put the Bears in harm's way too often. It so worked. Lovie Smith is the Coach of the Year. Everything asked of him hardly detailed much.

So can we agree that "doing everything that's asked of you" doesn't always indicate progress or success? Or that just maybe there is a better alternative to that? Think about it, I can take a dump in a box and put a guarantee on it if you want me to. I have the time. It won't make for a better product. And while that quote doesn't fully apply, it's from "Tommy Boy" and it's very funny. And you are probably picking up what I am laying down.

So Grossman came in and immediately made a play Orton had not made all year. A nice bullet down the middle of the field to our #1 receiver. I saw the light entirely at that point. I already knew--but it was validated with just that one series of offense. They did not believe and/or trust that Orton could do more good than bad. In turn they put handcuffs on him and the playbook had shrinkage. How that cannot be apparent to the scribes and mouths I don't know. Changing QB's unshackled the Bears' offense and we got to see what Ron Turner's system is really like. I had forgot. It's good.

As to whether Rex will be able to stay healthy or whether he can lead us to a Super Bowl has yet to be seen and the odds are probably against both. But we can be certain that he gives the Bears a much better chance to succeed in the playoffs. Case closed. So go find some other silly, outdated theory to write about. That "you don't pull a winning QB" is so 1970's. Next time you get behind a stance, how about going into detail as to why it's a good thing. And how about some statistics that are actually relevant to the argument.

3 comments:

The Armchair Quarterback said...

I had some of the same thoughts about this issue and your experience you mention when Grossman hits Muhammad in the middle of the field for 22 yards is exactly what you could hear (even through the tv) when the fans roared their approval. It was like a whole stadium went, "holy crap, so this is what's it's like to throw the ball." -Chicago deserves a little excitment on offense.

The Zoner said...

you nailed it. And people are criticizing the coaches for not giving him the same playbook. But he couldn't handle it, so they didn't give it to him. He had his chances all year to show he could throw the out and downfield and he was terribly inaccurate and had no touch on short or deep balls

New User Loke said...

It's been a while since the Bears had two quarterbacks whom people actually think have potential??? It's a nice feeling to have I just hope it is not a dream, we will see.... I say you play both of them going forward. Keep teams off balance and go with hot hand. Both will stay interested and neither one has looked that good or proved anything to this point.