You know Bear fans are down on their own team when you’re wearing a Bears hat during the holiday season and you get mocked by another fan for wearing it. You’re called brave and then you have to defend yourself.
Yes, that’s how bad it’s become these days in Chicago for Bears fans.
And I have to think it’s only going to get worse after Sunday’s game against Green Bay.
The silver lining is there’s only game remaining after that and then, it’s time for other Chicago sports.
On Wednesday, Chicago Bears coach Lovie Smith announced what many of us already knew and feared: Josh McCown will be the starting quarterback against Green Bay. Now, Lovie tends to be a bit stubborn with making changes and on Monday, I thought he’d stick with Caleb Hanie.
I can’t say yet whether it was a good thing or not that I was wrong, but I can tell you, it scares me that McCown hasn’t started a game in almost four years to the day: his last start was against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Dec. 23, 2007, for Oakland .
In 2010, he was gone from the NFL.
During his brief appearance last Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks, McCown completed a pass and threw an interception on the last two drives.
According to ESPN, McCown has completed two of eight passes since 2007.
When the Bears picked him up, I assumed his allure was his experience playing under offensive coordinator Mike Martz in 2006 at the Detroit Lions. He should have an easier time than others learning Martz’s system.
The question was posed to him on Wednesday and this is how he responded:
“It’s not ideal for anybody in any offense,” McCown said. “It’s not ideal to come in this late. But at the same time, as a competitor you understand where the other guys are at. You’ve got to get yourself up to speed and ready to play.
“Everybody expects you just to go play and play well. That’s the expectation for myself also; just to go out and do things to help us win the football game.
That answer doesn’t give me a lot of confidence. I also don’t have a lot of confidence thinking about his offensive choices: Roy Williams and Dane Sanzenbacher as wide receivers. I am not sure why, but Hanie didn’t throw a lot to wide receiver Earl Bennett, who has found success with quarterback Jay Cutler. Will McCown avoid him as well?
On Wednesday, running backs Matt Forte Marion Barber, wide receiver Devin Hester and tight end Kellen Davis watched the team’s practice from the sidelines along with four other teammates. Smith said the “majority” of them will play on Sunday.
I don’t know about you, but between McCown’s lack of experience and conditioning as well as his few offensive options, it’s going to be an ugly game. Very ugly.
But at the end of the day, may the Bears learn a less from this situation: it’s time to get a good backup quarterback.