Chicago Sun-Times

Monday practice roundup: Orton takes Moose's job

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It was interesting to survey the action after practice this afternoon at Halas Hall. There was a ton of individual work taking place, from offensive linemen running springs to Devin Hester catching punts, Caleb Hanie working on his footwork and Mark Anderson doing a little extra conditioning. That was just some of it. Most of the roster stayed on the field for an extra 20 minutes or more doing various drills.

Tight end Desmond Clark and guard Terrence Metcalf both returned to practice for the first time. Clark suffered a sprained right knee in the second preseason game at Seattle and was wearing a brace. Metcalf had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee a month ago and was also wearing a brace. Both were limited in their work. Anderson also practiced for the first time since fracturing his right thumb at Seattle. He had both hands heavily taped and said he's been able to keep his conditioning up during his time off.

*** The irony of Kyle Orton being voted by teammates as one of the two offensive captains was not lost on those in attendance. Orton takes the role wide receiver Muhsin Muhammad held the last few seasons. You know, the wide receiver who wasn't shy about sharing his feelings about his quarterbacks. Center Olin Kreutz is the other offensive captain. Linebacker Brian Urlacher and safety Mike Brown have the distinction on defense. Long snapper Pat Mannelly is back to being a captain. He held the role for several seasons before it was given to Brendon Ayanbadejo last year.

*** Count Brandon Rideau among the most surprised the wide receiver cleared waivers on Sunday. He figured once the Bears let him go that he would be headed elsewhere.

"I really did think someone was going to claim me," he said. "I thought I proved enough. It's hard. Everybody is trying to cut their rosters down so picking up a guy is tough.

*** Tight end Fontel Mines passed on opportunities with Baltimore and New Orleans to return to the Bears practice squad.

*** Players are off Tuesday, their normal off day.

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The fact Kyle Orton has been chosen by his team mates as a captain, speaks volumes on how this guy is as a leader, and being a leader is one key to being an NFL QB. Leadership is something the Bears have not had from their QB for a long long time. Orton is now one step closer to becoming a legit NFL QB. GO BEARS!!

Just watching the Chicago-Cleveland game and a couple observations:

Brandon McGowan looked better than Kevin Payne and has all preseason. Not sure why the change.

John St. Clair couldm't block a lego with other legos. He's a swing tackle for a reason and is not a starter we can rely on.

Bernie Kosar is one drunk moron. He was crocked by the game opener and slurred his way through the entire telecast and was sure to demean every bear he got the chance too. What a complete and biased douche! Listen to him try and pronounce words while ripping into any Chicago Bear quarterback or player ... probably tried making out with Suzy Kolber between takes!

Glad to see Ken Dorsey still hanging around. Loved watching him in his collegiate career even though I hate Miami.


It's good for Orton to become a team captain, but I have to think they are just trying to encourage him. Orton does not appear to be a quick thinker, can't improvise and doesn't show the kind of inner drive (Moxie) you see from guys like Farve, Romo, Brady, etc.. Hanie, although a big time rookie, clearly has more leadership skills on the field. The QB job is NOT too big for him. In four weeks time, we already know he can improv, he's got a good arm, throws a very catchable pass and he clearly takes control. I think Orton was named captain by default!

We need to cut Metcalf! Coach Ditka agrees with his lousy play when he said "This guy doesn't belong on a football field". This coaching staff falls in love with their own players and is infatuated with rookies. We need angry, bad ass O-Linemen! Not this *ussy!

Church, is your real name Brandon McGowan? I know you like the guy, but I just don't see him as an impact player. I hope I'm wrong. As far as saying he looked better than Payne, its kind of like saying Eminem is better than Vanilla Ice. Sure, they get out there and try to perform, but you really can't call it music...

Maybe if there was some quality coaching, things would be different. After all, Urlacher, Briggs, and even Mike Brown have not looked much better than McGowan and in probably the majority of cases, have looked worse this pre-season. But the pre-season is the pre-season. Let's hope they turn it up Sunday. I just don't have any faith in the coaching.

Once again Jerry in his wisdom has left the o-line in a bad way. Cincinatti just released a former all-pro (Williams), Bentley to my knowledge is still out there, but we are on a Metcalf watch. That is PATHETIC!! The last three years this regime (Angelo, Smith, Turner) have proven totally unable to build on this team they stumbled onto. They should be out of here. This is truly embarrassing to the fans and the once proud past. The division is there for the taking and this is the best Jerry can do. This crap about no #1 reciever yeah right! Hester is the highest paid DECOY in history. The Colts (Freeney) will pour in on Orton like Gustav and probably leave as much carnage. A major market and this is the best they can do? This staff in it's entirety should be shown the door Angelo is a league wide joke.

Willie Anderson an aging and injury-riddled lineman and Fred Miller are two players the Bears consider signing. I suggested Anderson in another post, but, after further review, 'his play stands (on the sidelines)'.

While, New England jumps at the opportunity to sign OT Mark Levoir (ND) a former Bears castoff stuck in a numbers game in St.Louis behind first round OTs Alex Barron and Orlando Pace.

Levoir is much improved, bigger and stronger, and will be an asset to the Patriots.

But, wait, 'THE GREAT' Terrence 'Bubba Gump' Metcalf is back, so all's good for the Bears. And Chris Williams' is getting better. OHHH BOYY!

Are you serious Dan? McGowan and Idonije have been the only two actually trying on the defense. McGowan is fast and aggresive and he's always around the ball. No he's not perfect and his coverage could be improved, but he's been one of the few bright spots so far on this crummy defense.

It's great to hear Kyle Orton replaces Mushin Muhammad as captain. But, which Bears receiver will replace Muhammad as the 'starer' at the QB after a pass goes right through one of their hands?

Dead serious, Mike. I'll give you Idonije, who's had a pretty damn good preseason playing against first teamers, and I'll even give you McGowan as aggressive. Fast? Maybe faster than many of the other safeties on this team, but would he start on any other NFL team? Always around the ball? Maybe, but rarely in position to make a big play; I guess I'm looking for the unit to perform like they did in '06 (gee, what did we have then that we don't now? ahem*Chico*cough-cough). Bright spot? Perhaps, but doesn't that scare the hell out of you because he's out-performing Urlacher, Briggs, Vasher, Tillman, etc? And I'm not disagreeing with you - he is outplaying those guys so far, but that just makes him a benchmard showing how low the Bears Defense has sunk, it doesn't make him a great player.

I, personally, was sick and tired of watching Mushin and Berrian drop 2/3 of the passes thrown to them.

This is huge for Orton. I dont think this was a move to encourge Orton its my understanding that his teammates and coaches are confident in his play ability.
Angelo just might have found a sound NFL QB in the 4th round. It will be great watching a consistent QB for once in the upteen years.

As for Willie Anderson if the Bears were to pick him up before the Colts game they would have to pay his full Salery for the year. Look for a move in week 2.

With the Colts having injurys on the O-Line it would be nice to see pressure up the middle.

Dont look for Creighton to comment on this forum as for his senceless bashing on Orton. Heck I bet Creighton couldnt wait untill Orton made a mistake so he could rip him for throwing his first INT of the Pre-Season. At that Orton was hit as he threw that pass.

Love ya Creighton :(

Krause, I think you are wrong about the Bears trying to "encourage" Orton. If that were the case, don't you think they would of done the same thing for Grossman? The fact that the Bears players actually select their team captains, shows how the other players feel about Kyle Orton. I remember during Orton's rookie season on one of the fox pre game shows, during an interview with Olin Kreutz, Kreutz said, "Kyle seems to have the 'it' factor as a QB" to me, that says a lot coming from Olin Kreutz.
As far as having no inner drive [Moxie], I think you are wrong again. Its funny you mention Favre. Last season, Dec 23, vs Green Bay, during frigid cold weather, Brett Favre [who by the way was playing for a playoff spot] seem to give in to the cold weather, it was like he gave in, not Orton. Orton came in and led the Bears to victory and had some impressive throws in the cold, windy, soldier field, now thats Moxie, don't ya say??? Krause, I like Hanie as much as the next Bear fan, but give Orton a chance before saying, "Orton has no drive and was handed the leadership role" you might be surprised GO BEARS!!

Orton was the man a Purdue, and was a Heisman candidate. Football is a team sport, so you can't look at his rookie season and say that all those wins were solely the credit of the defense. The fact is all he's done at Chicago is win. His rookie season he was, well, a rookie. Can we all get over that? There are many examples of rookies not having monster seasons - at QB position especially. All I can say is give the man the same number of games under center as we did Grossman. He's had several years to adjust to the pro game, he's been on the sidelines with a senior QB (though not very good) Griese as a mentor, and he's earned the starting position. Let's all repeat that together - he's earned the starting position. He's also earned the captain designation, which is big vote of confidence from his team.

San Diego would be a better team and probably made the superbowl had they stuck with Drew Brees. I'm happy to see that Chicago hasn't made the same mistake with their Purdue grad. Go, Bears, and Go Boilers!

Krause, you describe Hanie the way Orton was during his preseason rookie year...Orton made decisive passes, threw accurately, found his secondary options, and made long td strikes all while side stepping the pass rush. Of course, that was against 3rd and 2nd stringers...the same type of players Hanie saw all preseason.

Don't get me wrong, Hanie does have moxie and a nice arm, but to compare a tested veteran to an untested rookie just doesn't work.

I do hope that Orton succeeds, and keep the errors down as he usually does (as compared to Grossman), but at the same time take more chances downfield. As for Hanie, I hope he can learn, and maybe one day be a successful QB for the bears down the road. And we'll need good QB play, steady if not spectacular - sans the Grossman errors - for the defense, running game, and team overall to succeed.

Here's hoping to a better season.. GO Bears!

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on September 1, 2008 5:54 PM.

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