In a situation that really looks like a team was bidding against itself, the Chicago Bears have signed quarterback Mike Glennon, formerly of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, to a whopping three-year, $45 million contract with $19 million guaranteed. In a subsequent move, the Bears also released veteran quarterback Jay Cutler, who has been the face of the franchise (for better or worse) over the past eight seasons. Both quarterbacks were due for a change and these moves have real impact in dynasty leagues. Let’s break down the affected parties.
Mike Glennon, QB CHI
Glennon has a career 59.4 completion percentage with 30 touchdowns and 15 interceptions over parts of four seasons as the backup in Tampa Bay. His overall rating is also a respectable 84.6. The obvious question is the lack of sample size. After all, Glennon has appeared in only 21 games over his four year career, some of that in mop-up duty. Still, his name has surfaced several times as a trade target for teams over that span as many NFL executives believe he has what it takes to be a successful starter for a team, despite his lack of experience. He has all the tangibles you look for but it’s still a risky proposition for the Bears as you simply don’t know what he can do as the starter. At the very least, most believe players will be more likely to rally around Glennon if his personality is different than that of Cutler’s.
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The Bears have lost their most impactful weapon in receiver Alshon Jeffery and don’t exactly boast an explosive offense. Glennon will inherit a unit featuring a dynamic young running back in the form of Jordan Howard but the rest of the receiving depth chart isn’t very impressive as it currently houses the likes of Kevin White, Josh Bellamy, Eddie Royal, Rueben Randle and Cameron Meredith. Look for the Bears to be active in free agency and the draft in order to add more weapons for Glennon moving forward.
Currently the QB35, look for Glennon to rise up into the 20s before the season, depending on what other additions the Bears make. He’s worthy of a bench spot for dynasty owners looking for help at the quarterback position.
Jordan Howard, RB CHI
The sky is really the limit for Howard. Opposing teams are going to challenge Glennon to beat them, but Howard showed last year he’s up to the task. While it would have been great to see Chicago get a more established quarterback, the changes in the Windy City shouldn’t adversely affect Howard’s production much. This news shouldn’t have Howard owners panicking.
Jay Cutler, QB CHI
The eight year odyssey ends with little fanfare. Cutler has extraordinary arm talent and ability but has never been able to truly become a leader on or off the field. His career numbers are impressive with 32,467 passing yards and 208 touchdown passes. However, the 202 turnovers (146 interceptions and 56 lost fumbles) are always going to haunt his legacy as he continuously takes unnecessary risks and makes unforgiveable mistakes. The Jets are rumored to have interest in Cutler and he’d be an upgrade on what they have. However, we know what we’re going to get with him – a low-end QB2 who can have a monster game or lose you a game all by himself. Perhaps a change of scenery will bring us “good Jay” at least in the short term.
The loss of Jeffery is going to be a significant blow to the Bears this year and beyond. Cameron Meredith turned it on late last year, but it’s hard to look at him and see him vaulting to be the primary target. The oft-injured Kevin White needs to develop quickly as the Bears (and Glennon) are counting on him making an impact early and often now. You have to believe the Bears are going to add someone other than Rueben Randle moving forward as well. The cupboard just isn’t exactly stocked here.
Most of the guaranteed money in Glennon’s contract comes early, so don’t be surprised if the Bears jump on grabbing a young quarterback early in the draft. While this player would likely have to wait a year or so to start, sometimes that’s not a bad thing at all. Simply put, the Glennon signing doesn’t take the Bears off the market right now.
We’ll continue to track all the movement, so stay tuned!