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It's been creeping up each and every week. It dances around our heads but we keep telling ourselves that the Bears are winning. But it has to be asked. Should Orton remain the starter simply because he is the beneficiary of outstanding defense?

As valued reader PV notes: "The only thing keeping Orton from being completely reviled and booed off the field is that the Bears have kept winning. While some see that as the very argument that he's been doing a good job, despite his obviously terrible stats, that is not good enough for me."

People want to compare the Bears to the Ravens of 2000. But guess what? Those Ravens scored 24 or more points 8 times. Over 30 points 4 times. And over 40 once. They also had 20 TD passes. Yes their defense was dominant. But they put up some points. They had Priest Holmes and Jamal Lewis. A killer go-to-guy in Shannon Sharpe. And some speedy receivers who could stretch the D. They had over 3100 passing yards.

The Bears are on pace for 1953 passing yards and are currently dead last in the league. They have thrown only 9 TD passes and have 13 picks. They are on pace for 12 TD passes for the entire season. It's almost unfathomable. They are also completing only 53% of their passes. The Ravens completed almost 57% and threw downfield much more.

Compare the defense to the Ravens. But not the offense. It's not even close. People are starting to pine for Grossman. But why hasn't anyone mentioned Jeff Blake? Are we really to believe that Grossman can come back from a major injury without playing in a regular season game and lead the team to the Super Bowl? He has all of 6 NFL games under his belt. It's ridiculous. Maybe Blake got real old real quick. I don't know. But I know he has 133 TDs and only 99 INTs in his career. He's somewhat mobile. He's totally experienced. He can throw the out pattern. He knows this offense and he's not going to puke on himself. You can laugh. Then consider the options.

PV also notes that next week against Pittsburgh could be the game where it explodes on the Bears. If/when they are down 17-0 and they look to the bench, it should be Blake that gets the call.


Anonymous said...

The one thing my diatribe on Orton didn't do is propose a solution. It all depends on how ready Grossman is to play; reports are he's really not ready yet, which makes Blake the option by default. It also might be a good interim solution until Grossman might be ready.

Here's a scenario: the Bears are down 13-0 at halftime @ PITT, Orton has only three completions (like this week), a buncha bad throws, a pick or two and a couple sacks. Bring in Blake for the second half, let Orton watch, and maybe learn (though I expect Blake won't fare that well). If Grossman isn't ready for Atlanta next week, it's pretty easy to go back to Orton that week coz no one thinks Blake is really any kind of longer-term solution (this year or beyond). If Orton struggles again, maybe Grossman can come in that game or, most likely, be ready for GB on Christmas Day...okay this is all PURE speculatin and what-if-ing, but it would be interesting.

The thing is Orton has set the bar so low that even arguments that Grossman hasn't played all year and was never that good to begin with don't wash with me--I mean, he just HAS to be better than Orton has been.


The Zoner said...

Grossman may be better, but that does not qualify him to lead a team thru the playoffs. I'd feel more comfortable with Blake if he were given the practice time.

If Grossman was in at least they would run the full offense. All you see now are dump-offs, slants and the occasional whip it downfield like ya just don't care.

People talk about managing the offense, etc. Who better than a veteran like Blake who values the ball?