Chicago Bears and the Matt Barkley Delusion
The Chicago Bears and their fan base are desperate to find a long-term answer at quarterback which has spurred some delusional thoughts about Matt Barkley.
Jay Cutler’s roller coaster like career with the Chicago Bears is likely to come to an end this offseason. His anticipated departure has created uncertainty at the quarterback position for the first time in the last 8 seasons.
Despite his issues, Cutler’s talent offered hope that he would someday put it all together. Moving on from him leaves the Bears without a legitimate starting option at the quarterback position.
This lack of direction has resulted in some to get overly excited about the average play of Matt Barkley. He has put together a few nice games here at the end of the season, but the fact is he’s nothing more than a solid backup.
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Barkley’s performance against the Washington Redskins should bring the hype train to a screeching halt. In the past two weeks, he has thrown 8 interceptions bringing his season total to 12 in just six games.
Several of those interceptions can be written off because of poor receiver play, but the truth is Barkley is not a realistic option to be the Bears long-term starting quarterback. This franchise needs to spend a lot of time searching the free agent market, trade options and draft prospects to find that player.
They should handle the Barkley situation by giving him a solid contract offer to be the team’s primary backup. Then based on their offseason moves they could either have Brian Hoyer as the stop-gap starter or release Hoyer to save some money.
Chicago’s search for a long-term starting quarterback is going to be difficult. The free agent market won’t offer many options with Mike Glennon and maybe Tyrod Taylor being the most intriguing players.
Looking to address the position via a trade could be the best option but will cost the Bears a lot in terms of draft picks. The trade options could include Jimmy Garoppolo, AJ McCarron and Tony Romo. Garoppolo is the most interesting option, but would also cost the most.
The 2017 NFL draft doesn’t really offer much help at the quarterback position. Most of the prospect projected as possible 1st round players are extremely raw. My personal rankings don’t have a quarterback worthy of a top-20 pick.
It’ll be an interesting offseason in Chicago where the search for a franchise quarterback starts again. Hopefully everyone is on the same page regarding Matt Barkley and his overall lack of upside.