Like they always say, never look a gift neckbeard in the mouth.
Quarterback Kyle Orton became available this week when the Denver Broncos pledged to full-fledged Tebowmania for the remainder of 2011 and waived Orton.
The timing is perfect for the Bears, who have possibly lost starter Jay Cutler for the remainder of the regular season after Cutler broke his right thumb on Sunday against the Chargers. And the timing may not be a coincidence. According to the Denver Post, Orton’s agent talked to the Broncos about a possible release when Cutler went down because the idea of playing in Chicago appealed to Orton.
Perhaps because they respected the way Orton handled himself in wake of Tebow’s promotion, or maybe because they want to try saving $2.5 million, the Broncos acquiesced to the demand.
Now it is just a matter of whether the Bears end up getting Orton, since they are 30th in the waiver order. However, the Houston Chronicle indicated that another 7-3 team that just lost its starter to injury, the Texans, are cool with Matt Leinart as their guy and will not claim Orton. (Good luck with that, guys).
Chicago, of course, is where Orton began his career and established himself as a legend his rookie season — in the world of Jack Daniel’s consumption. Oh, he also managed to keep the Bears’ ship sailing straight long enough to clinch a playoff berth before giving way to injured starter Rex Grossman for the postseason.
Now, he would be being asked to do the exact thing he did before as a much less-experienced player — not drink Jack and end up in a limo with some cougar, but play well enough to get the Bears into the playoffs before the starter returns. Ironically, in this case the starter happens to be the very guy who the Bears traded him for.
Even if the Bears do land Orton, Caleb Hanie figures to start at Oakland this week. But if Hanie falters at all, it only makes sense to bring a veteran in the fold, particularly one familiar with the organization. (Even if he has matured a bit and won’t be doing this anymore).
And as a tasty sidenote, the Bears visit Denver in two weeks. You think Orton doesn’t have that one circled on his calendar?