It could be that the return of Rex Grossman is down to just a little negotiating.
General manager Jerry Angelo, who has not spoken to assembled media since four days after the season ended, reiterated his desire to see the former first-round pick return in comments made public on the organization’s Web site.
``We would definitely like to have Rex back,’’ he said. ``We’ve talked internally, and at some point we will visit with him and see if we can create a situation that’s workable for all of us. We’ve invested a lot in Rex, and we see him competing for the starting position.
``Given the familiarity that he has with our system and us with him, there’s no downside. He’s been a good soldier for us in terms of whatever role we’ve asked him to play, particularly this past season. We feel that having him in the mix makes us a better football team.’’
The Bears wrapped up their organizational meetings last week at Halas Hall and will be headed to Indianapolis for the scouting combine on Wednesday. That would figure to be a place for Angelo to get together with Eugene Parker, Grossman’s agent, who is based in nearby Fort Wayne, Ind.
It’s interesting to note that Angelo makes it clear Grossman would be competing for the starting job that belonged to Kyle Orton at the end of the season after Grossman suffered a sprained knee at Washington. He didn’t hand the job to him outright.
Parker has made it clear he and his client are keeping all options open heading to free agency. Grossman wanted to sign a longterm extension at this time last year and when that didn’t happen, he earned the right to reach the open market. Free agency begins at 11 p.m. Feb. 28. While it remains to be seen how other clubs regard Grossman in what is a weak cast of available passers, there doesn’t figure to be many teams willing to put him in the mix for a starting job immediately. Grossman has made known his desire to return here also.
What does it all mean? A signing could be on the way before too long. If Grossman returns, it’s been speculated that could signal the end for veteran Brian Griese. Griese is due a $300,000 roster bonus and the club doesn’t figure to have the same three passers as it did last season. Angelo is expected to draft a young passer come April.
In terms of Orton, the GM announced on the team’s PR machine that the depth chart at quarterback is out of his hands.
``That’s going to be determined by the coaches [in relation to] the competition that we’re able to create here in the offseason. But we certainly respect and feel very good about what Kyle has done for us, not just this past year but when you go back to his rookie year, and we certainly see a player that has gotten better.’’