Chicago Sun-Times

The quarterback decision: Orton, Lovie, Turner speak

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We'll turn the blog over to the men involved today.

A look at the Q&A's with Kyle Orton, Lovie Smith and Ron Turner.


KYLE ORTON

REACTION?

"Obviously I'm excited. I want to try to make the most of it and win football games."

WHAT DID THEY TELL YOU?

"It was kind of the same thought as we were going in, just consistent play and just doing the right things on offense, not that Rex didn't do that or anything. I think Rex has played well. I just focus on myself and getting ready to play."

DID YOU FEEL LIKE IT WAS A LONGTIME COMING?

"I'm real excited. This is obviously one of my goals going into the season. As a team, we've got a lot of goals to accomplish and this is just the start of it."

HOW MUCH OF A RELIEF WAS IT?

"I think it's a relief and now it's just all about the unit and knowing what everybody's going to do and just kind of tailoring things to the way that we like it."

HOW DO YOU EVALUATE YOURSELF?

"I think I've just continued to get better in the preseason--in the games and in practice--so this will be another step to take. We'll get a lot more playing time this week and just try to get ready for Indianapolis."

CAN YOU BE YOURSELF A LITTLE BIT MORE NOW?

"Oh yeah. Plus now you can try to establish yourself as a leader.20It's not going to happen overnight, but just with work ethic and performance just try to establish yourself as a leader on this offense."

DID TELL YOU INDIVIDUALLY?

"Lovie called me up and told me and then talked to Rex I believe."

NOTICE A DIFFERENCE IN PRACTICE TODAY?

"This is a quick turnaround for us with the long flight from Seattle and then we play on Thursday, so I don't think people have too much time to sit around and think about it right now. We've got to get ready for San Francisco on a short week."

WAS IT A GOOD TIME FOR A DECISION?

"I'm sure all along this was in coach's game plan, just the fact that we're going to play so long together as a unit in this game and then probably not all that much the next game. I'm sure he had that thought in his mind the entire time."

HOW FAR HAVE YOU COME SINCE YOUR ROOKIE YEAR?

"People make such a big deal about that, my rookie year and everything, but I think everybody on this team has gotten better since they were a rookie, not just me. That stuff's just in the past and I'm just focused on playing good football right now."

WHAT IS THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE?

"Just being in the same system. This is my fourth year. My accuracy has improved. My command of the offense has improved. And just being able to play at a high level."


LOVIE SMITH

"To come to a decision like that, we've taken a lot of things into consideration: last year, how we finished the season, OTAs, training camp, preseason games. In the end it comes down to a gut feeling that you have. I feel good about Kyle leading our team. We have big plans. The first game we got a little bit done. Second game we had a couple things we need to clean up. This third preseason game you normally play your group quite a bit. We plan on doing that and going from there."

DID YOU HAVE A GOOD IDEA AFTER THE SEATTLE GAME?

"When I said things were becoming clearer, every day things have cleared up a little bit. You learned a little bit more to confirm some things that you know. But I think when you say you have a competition, you have to let the guys compete and I feel like going through two preseason games we had a chance to let the players have one last look. But it wasn't based on just the preseason games or just training camp--not one thing--just a lot of different things."

IS THE QB DERBY OVER?
"Is it over? Nothing is ever over with any position. We don't name any guys starters for a lifetime or anything like that. But we feel real good about Kyle just like we feel good about Olin Kreutz being our center, Lance Briggs being our will linebacker."

DID A LOT OF THINGS GO INTO THE DECISION?

"When I say a lot, you're going to have to go with that. I'm talking about just different things on how we've evaluated the players. When you get to just the quarterback position, there were a lot of things--you name it--from completions to turnovers to just the feeling we have on who can manage the game the best for us. All of those things for us. The good thing about evaluating both Rex and Kyle, we've had a long time to do it. It's been quite a few years we've had a chance to see both guys play."

WHAT WAS REX'S REACTION?

"Disappointment. Of course, no competitor will agree with a decision when it doesn't go their way. But Rex is a team player. He's been in this situation before and he'll do whatever he needs to do to help our football team win."

DID KYLE'S WINNING PERCENTAGE HAVE A LOT TO DO WITH IT?

"That's what it's all about in the end, our quarterback leading our team to a victory/ We'll ask him to do certain things. Some games we may ask him to pass more, other games we may not. There's a lot of things that we ll ask him to do and you have to feel good about that guy being able to do that and we feel that way about Kyle."

WAS THE DECISION DIFFICULT GIVEN THE PLAY OF THE OFFENSIVE LINE?

"Not necessarily. Both guys were in the same situation, which is the good part about it. Both guys played both preseason games with the same line and we let both players throw to all the different receivers. I think we did about what we could to let them compete fairly for the position."

RON TURNER

TOUGH DECISION, EASY DECISION, ONE YOU HAD TO MAKE?

Tough decision because both guys played well. Both guys really accepted the challenge, both guys prepared and played well on a consistent basis.

ARE YOU GLAD IT'S OVER?

We were ready to move on and start preparing. We've got to start getting ready for the first week. This was another step.

WAS IT A DISTRACTION AT ALL?

I didn't see it as one. And I thought both of them handled it very well.

CAN YOU EVEN COMPARE ORTON TO WHERE HE WAS IN 2005, OR IS HE TOTALLY DIFFERENT?

Oh no. He's so far ahead of where he was then. His knowledge of the system, his physical condition, the way he is throwing the ball, everything.

HOW SCALED BACK WAS THE PLAY BOOK IN 2005?

Oh a lot. No question about that. Obviously, we won't have to do that.

DID THAT MAKE IT TOUGH TO PREPARE FROM WEEK TO WEEK THAT SEASON? YOU DIDN'T HAVE AS MUCH TO PULL FROM?

It always does. The more you can do. You could see things you wanted to do and then you just couldn't. The more you can do the better. It gives you a chance to spread it out a little more and do some things.

WHAT SPECIFICALLY DID YOU SEE FROM KYLE TO MAKE YOU SAY HE'S READY?

Consistency. Consistency in running the offense. And both guys. That's not to say that didn't come from Rex.

HOW DID REX TAKE IT?

He's a competitor. He wanted to be the guy. But he's also a team guy and he'l do whatever he can to help this team win and be ready to go when his time comes.

DID ORTON'S CONRACT SITUATION VS. REX'S WEIGH ON THE DECISION?

It never even came up. Not at all.

IN A NUTSHELL, WHAT LED TO THE DECISION?

Again both guys played well and it's just a decision we made and we're moving forward with it. I don't know if there's any one thing.

DID KYLE DO ANYTHING BETTER THAN HE DID IN THE PAST?

He's got a lot better grasp of the offense obviously being here another year. Physically he's in really good shape and he's playing the best football of his life.

DID REX NOT DO SOMETHING YOU NEEDED TO SEE?

No, no, no. He did a good job and both guys competed their butts off. And both guys played really well. Rex didn't do anything to make us wonder about him or anything. We know we can win with him and we believe that, just like we can with Kyle.

WHAT IS YOUR SITUATION WITH THE RECEIVERS?

We're zeroing in on that. That's sorting itself out. We have another game and they'll all play in this game coming up, but that's starting to take shape.

WILL PLAYING TIME THURSDAY BE AN INDICATION OF WHAT WE CAN SEE IN THE SEASON?

Maybe a little, but not totally because there's some guys that we still that we want to get a good look at just to make sure. I don't think it necessarily makes a statement of what we said, there might be some guys that we know what he can do and maybe he doesn't get as many reps and somebody else gets more who we want to look at, so you can't say Oh, he's getting a lot of reps he must be the guy well, it might be but it might not be.

IS IT TOUGHER TO IDENTIFY EVERYONE'S STRENGTHS WHEN YOU HAVE SO MANY MOVING PARTS?

Not really because you can see everybody still has an opportunity to go play, every guy out there has had an opportunity to play every day in practice and in the two preseason games that we've had so far. So no, even though we're moving guys around a lot they're still out there taking snaps.

DID YOU PLAN TO MAKE AN ANNOUNCEMENT AT THIS TIME ALL ALONG?

We were hoping. We never set a timetable and said we have to have it done by this date. We were hoping to have something so we can get in the huddle and get things in place.

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22 Comments

what is really bad about this is that Lovie and Turner don't seem to know why they choose Orton.....that worries me, but than again most things about the Bears worry me.

Is Turner actually living in a Fairy tale? He sounds like an optimistic robot, Rex didn't do anything wrong we just want to . I can't tell but it would be better to know actual concrete reasons as to why Orton won the role. And thanks for the lay up questions, they really don't help much, "DID THAT MAKE IT TOUGH TO PREPARE FROM WEEK TO WEEK THAT SEASON? YOU DIDN'T HAVE AS MUCH TO PULL FROM?" Seriously.

What do you expect them to say? A team that regularly plays 3 or more quarterbacks per year can't throw any of them under the bus. They can't even say that Orton gives them a better chance to win, even if they think he does. This is a league with very overpaid egomaniacs. One small comment and the player either quits on the team or starts demanding a trade, creating a distraction. Doesn't matter what questions are asked, your going to hear the company line answers.

Does it seem like they might be setting Orton up for failure?? Kind of let the Oline work things out in the first four games of the season and then blame orton and bring rex in to be "the savior #1 Draft Pick" so Angelo can give him a big paycheck next year and try to say I told you so's to everyone. 8-8 this year with orton 0-4 to start.

ONCE AGAIN THEY PICKED THE STARTING QUARTERBACK TO SOON!
NEITHER ONE OF THESE GUYS IS GOING TO MAKE IT A FULL SEASON
ANY HOW, SO THEY SHOULD HAVE KEPT THE COMPETITION GOING!

Down here, Chris Simms of The Bucs will either be traded or released in the next two weeks. Recently, 23 teams had reps watch Simms workout at Bucs training camp. This included 3 CFL teams. The Bears did not send a rep for the same reason that they did not trade for or draft a quarterback. They are just tickled pink with and in denial of their quarterbacks. The three stooges continue unabated with the blessings of The McCaskeys. Woe is us!

The reason that Orton was selected for the starting postion was that he can actually take a snap from the center with out fumbling it. Now with that being said it wont matter anyways cuz he will get a two step drop and then be sacked cuz the line sucks! It will only be a matter of time before Orton becomes hurt by bad blocking. The Bears better be looking for a 4th Qb, wait I heard Jim Miller was at training camp a few weeks ago, maybe that is their backup plan! The only chance we have this year is if the Defense and Special Teams play well. GO BEARS!

It's only a matter of time before Caleb Hanie starts getting some snaps. Orton, like Grossman, plays at the the back-up level. Hanie is the only Bears QB who has exhibited poise in the pocket and has speed for when the O-line will (inevitably) disintegrate. When will the organization see that they have nothing to lose by playing the rookie?

Wow the say history repeats itself well chicago fans it does. As very much a Chicago bears fan. How much longer are we going to go thru so many quaterbacks before the bears orginzation finally get real with themselfs and go after a real quarterback and stop paying these games lets draft a rookie and devolp him that hasn't happened in the past and isn't working now. Orton wont be able to throw this much cause our offensive line will not be protecting him leading orton to blame and hurting him and then the bears will go and play all 3 quartebacks this year and throw there hands up in the air. Then some coaches will be fired as well. Because of the losses and sucky quarterbacks we have. So with this all being said If this year doesnt Fly I think that Jerry Angelo Should be held accountable for his job of getting players. But with this rate probably the next 10 more years will probably go thru 30 more quarterbacks because the bears wont go after good quality quaterbacks. Go bears Kyle Orton will be 0-6 this year then be benched . His Deep ball isnt there his play level isn't there. The Fact of the matter is the Bears put him in his rookie year only to manage the game and get the run game devolped. But the bears knew the had no qualitys quarterbacks the day after draft pick was over and the first day of camp but they have a good feeling Kyle can lead our team

A mistake ,I Know Rex Is the Better QB. Go Bears ,Go Kyle, Bears 11-5 off the bus running.

I think it's time to shop Mark Anderson for a new OT. There has to be a team like Philly or Pittsburgh that would love a quality pass rusher in exchange for a guy that can block.

Here are a few more questions and answers with Turner:

DO YOU KNOW HOW TO USE A TIGHT END?

Sure, they block. We like to throw to them during the second half of the season -- after defenses are worn down a little. Plus, I want to protect Ditka's team records.

COULD YOU USE OLSEN A LITTLE MORE THIS YEAR?

Why? Tall guy, good hands, great speed, but a so-so blocker. We find him really difficult to cover in practice, but our linebackers are only average. I'm not sure he would be so good in a real game.

DOES HESTER KNOW THE OFFENSE THIS YEAR?

About as well as I do. It's only five plays, afterall. But we mix it up real good to keep opposing defenses off balance.

SO WHAT WAS THE KEY PLAY DURING THAT WINNING DRIVE AGAINST THE EAGLES LAST YEAR?

Sorry, but I don't recall that series.

Cheer up people we got San Fran this week our team should actually look good against them. After all have you seen there Dline, or there QB. However if we look bad against them you may want to sell your season tickets now. They are a bad team a real bad team, we should beat them and make them look really bad while we do it. We should??

Creighton, something positive from you on the BEARS, and quite correct I must add, although I wish I was back in Chi to pick-up some of those season tickets that are going to be up for auction if we do look bad against sciso.....Hiestand is under pressure this year, he's got young bodies to work with on the o-line, and he needs to get them in sync by the 3rd game of the season or it will be a long year offensively.....Look at the Giants line and see what I'm talking about no 1st rounders just sound coaching, good solid blocking scheme, and a real commitment to the running game.....I still say its too early to bail on the Bears this season......

DO YOU HAVE A STRETCHER READY FOR ORTON AFTER DWIGHT FREENY BLOWS PAST THE WORST O-LINE IN THE LEAGUE?

We ordered a couple extra just in case he gets killed more than once.

DO YOU THINK THE DEFENSE AND SPECIAL TEAMS WILL OUT SCORE THE OFFENSE THIS YEAR?

Yes, thats why like I said we can win with both rex and kyle.

ARE YOU LOVIE'S SCAPE GOAT THIS YEAR?

Baaa, Baaaa.

`I think it's time to shop Mark Anderson for a new OT'

I was thinking the same thing, although any Olineman would do.

Ha, very clever "Seedy." Creighton, I too am surprised at your optimism for the upcoming game. However if you saw what San. Fran. did to the Packers, I would advise you to return to your normal self. They completely shut down Green Bay.

And let's not forget we kinda got them busted for tampering charges. I expect them to blitz a whole lot...more so than the 'Hawks.

There is no way on this planet that I will ever say the Sisco kids have a chance against the Bears. I hate that team and as PO'od as I am with the Bears, Angelo, Lovie, Turner and bumbling Bob not now, not ever will I give those ladies the benifit of the doubt, I don't care how good they are. Yeah I saw the Pak game, so what the Fudge Packers gave that game away by playing really really bad.

Mike who are the girl scouts gonna blitz with, Willis is not much of a blitzer niether is Spikes, Balmer is playing DT not End last I saw, Justin Smith is there best rusher and even the Bungles didn't want him.

There offense also is a joke, I mean Issac Bruce are you kidding me, Gore is there big threat but the Bears will not have to respect this passing game much and will be able to pressure on the QB early, 9er's oline has some players on it but it is really a one hit wonder it terms of what they do, if the Bears stack the box they should be fine. I will take the Bears for the Win Vash and Peanut are gonna have big games and so is Kellen Davis. Olson might even get into the act. Forte may turn the corner a lot on this team and look for Lloyd to also shine against a former team he hates and who's defense he knows really well.

I want to see Idonje and Tommie Harris paired together on the d-line. If Harris can stay healthy and Idonje keeps improving, they could be a formidable duo, which will make Urlacher and everyone else a whole lot better.

I would keep Mark Anderson simply because he can be a change of pace guy on passing downs. That or he can hold up the tackling dummies at practice. No need to trade him for an o-lineman. Once the "turk" makes his visits over the next 10 days, there should be plenty of o-lineman available. Getting a new guy up to speed in the Bears offense shouldn't be that difficult. Afterall, it's Turner's offense, so it can't be all that sophisticated or difficult to learn. Hell, even Grossman kind of, sort of understood it after 6 years.

Seedy you won't see Harris and Izzy play together unless Izzy is playing end. Him and Tommy play the same position, 3 Tech, Izzy is his back up. DT is very deep on this tam and very talented all be it injury prone. But ist's deep enough this year to loose both starters and still be good, not great but good.

As for a new offensive lineman well thats not gonna happen, first there is the salry cap issue and second Angelo, Turner and Lovie feel this is the best offensive line ever on the best offense ever, so they don't need help.

Man I have read all this to Creighton,Chi Town Bear, chichagoan on, Randy, Mike, back to Creighton, on too speedy and then back to Creighton. Lotta half bag full or full of chines crap.

Orton is starting we all know that. Tait and StClair being the tackeles. garza and Beekman the Gaurds and Olin at center.
Running backs Forte and Mckie. Wide out well..... we can all count on Booker being a #1 or 2.

People it will be a crap shoute this year. The defense will be the core of the team and Devin Hester will be the "X" factor. Plain and simple. Its only a blessing that the Bears have Orton as their opening day starter.

Yeah 12-4!

After watching the Bears training camp and living in North Dakota for the past 12 years there's 2 things I know.
1. Rex is far better that Kyle and it showed.
2. Bob Babich is the worst coach in North Dakota State history as well as the worst d-coordinator.

Go Bears.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on August 18, 2008 8:49 PM.

Orton named the starter (for now) was the previous entry in this blog.

DE Anderson undergoes thumb surgery is the next entry in this blog.

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