Mike Glennon is officially a Chicago Bear.
The Chicago Bears have signed Glennon to a three-year, $45 million dollar contract. The former third round pick in 2013, Glennon will earn $18.5 million in guaranteed money.
Glennon has only appeared in two games over the past two seasons. With the Buccaneers all in on Jameis Winston, Glennon was pushed to the backup roll.
Glennon put up solid numbers his first two seasons in Tampa Bay. In 13 games his rookie season, the NC State product threw for 2,608 yards with 19TDs and 9INTS. In 6 games in 2014, Glennon threw for 1,417 yards for 10 TDs and 6INTs.
It was time for the Jay Cutler era to end in Chicago. His contract having no more guaranteed money was the first sign. But, a change at the position was desperately needed for a rebuilding roster. And could you really sell Cutler to the fans for another year? No. It was time for a change and Glennon becomes the new face at quarterback in Chicago…but not for long.
Looking at Glennon’s deal, it’s only 19 million guaranteed, half of what Brock Osweiler got in his deal with the Texans last offseason. 15 of the 19 million will come in 2017, putting it in terms that he may not be with the Bears for all three years. Releasing him after one year would then only cause a $4M dollar cap hit. All this considered, Glennon fits the “bridge-QB” criteria.
Glennon’s arm strength jumps right out at you when watching the tape. It has always been the biggest part of his game. He can get the ball downfield and make the big play. Here’s a quote from ESPN writer and former NFL player Matt Bowen:
Glennon can fit the ball into tight windows and hit the deep out, dig, seam, corner, fade. Ball comes out clean. And he is going to challenge defensive backs in coverage. Good feel and anticipation off play action too. Find the lane and deliver the ball. I think Glennon has enough athleticism to produce on sprint and boot action. And he will show the ability to make the occasional off-schedule play. Keeps the eyes down the field. Also works quickly through his progressions and improved reading coverages from Year 1 to Year 2.
One thing is for sure, Mike Glennon is not the QB for the future. The guaranteed money backs that up. As the Bears continue their search for a franchise QB, Glennon serves as someone who will bridge the gap until the other guy is ready. So why did the Bears not keep Matt Barkley to be their bridge guy? Well, Barkley did not play outstanding last season. There were some flashes but not enough for Ryan Pace to keep him around. The Bears still want to win games while rebuilding, and Glennon gives them a good chance of doing that. He has not seen anywhere close to a sufficient numbers of game reps over the past two seasons as Barkley did, but Glennon possess the skill and more of an upside to be a starting QB in the NFL.
The Chicago Bears are still going to draft a QB in the 2017 NFL draft. The question that remains is where. Will Pace pick one at No. 3 or wait until the second, maybe even the third round to draft a rookie QB. With other pressing needs like cornerback and saftey, the Bears could wait until the second round to draft their hopeful QB of the future. After the combine, there is still no clear-cut QB coming out of the draft. Everyone has flaws, as is expected, but none are expected to be able to start year one or is anyone substantially above the rest. And that being said, Glennon brings the Bears a season to develop a young quarterback and improve on his game.
Glennon may only be here one season, but that gives the rookie time to learn and improve. Throwing a rookie into the fire right away does not have a great success rate. If the Bears want success, they have to do it right.