Chicago Sun-Times

Josh McCown could return to Bears in 2012

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Bears coach Lovie Smith was impressed enough with 32-year-old veteran Josh McCown that he would consider bringing him back in 2012.

McCown, who signed a one-year contract, completed 19 of 28 passes for 242 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions.

"I think everything you do, you have to look at the performance, and the performance that Josh put in last night was impressive," Smith said. "That's why we can get so much done this week. We want to see him have an opportunity to come back and play again this coming week. But you normally can find a spot for a player who played the way he played last night."

The Bears have been officially eliminated from the postseason. But Smith said his plan is to field players who can win the finale against the Minnesota Vikings.

Asked about playing rookie Nathan Enderle, Smith said, "It's not a tryout period for us.

"We're gonna go with the quarterback that gives us the best opportunity to win, period, and that's Josh. So Nathan will have his time. He's a good quarterback for the future. But that future isn't now."

Smith said not trying to win Sunday's game wouldn't be fair to other players.

"Others may do it differently. But for us, [it would] be pretty hard to tell the rest of the guys, 'Hey we've got a tryout period going here. We don't really care if we win. We just want to see this guy play.' Nah, we won't do it that way," Smith said. "Every time we go out with the same purpose, and that's trying to win the football game. That's the approach we'll take this week."

Smith said Jay Cutler is getting pins removed from his right thumb Tuesday. But he suggested that Cutler wouldn't play Sunday.

"If they're healthy and ready to go, we won't tell them no. But there are some other guys we feel comfortable playing," Smith said, speaking of Cutler and running back Matt Forte. "They're making progress but if we had other things on the line, we would take the same approach. We would never stop a player that wanted to play who was healthy and really ready to go, but I don't know if that'll be the case."

But Smith downplayed that McCown could have played this well earlier, since Caleb Hanie was 0-4 as a starter.

"We felt like the time for Josh to play was last night. We were giving him an opportunity to catch up a little bit. He'd been out of football," Smith said. "When a guy plays the way he did last night, you can always say that. But there was nothing... to me we followed the proper course to get him out there on the football team."

Asked what impressed him most, Smith said, "I think just about everything he did.

"First off, it's your first start and you haven't played in a long time. You haven't been around very long as far as playing with your teammates, the receivers; just getting the ball from a different center. All of those things. But then the magnitude of the game; primetime, only one game, and playing against the Super Bowl champion as much as anything. The Packers are the best team in the league. And to go against them...just felt like he belonged right away.

"He had a couple of bad plays where he had to fight through adversity. But he did. Just his control throughout the game, and then to see him get more and more confidence. As I said at the end of making plays, knowing when to take off and run with the ball, knowing when to scramble around and make throws. You had to be impressed with everything he did."

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7 Comments

He deseves a shot but in no way is he a final answer as back-up. This was one game in which he played well for the Bears. Perhaps next week that will make two. He is perhaps okay for a year or two but is unlikely to be around after that.

Agree. Would like to see more of him but too soon to tell. Good game, McCown.

He played well really? Gosh sense when did throwing two picks to only one touchdown ever be considerd playing well? See this is waht Imean when I talk about the s##### quarterbacks polluiting the NFL. McCown is a bust has been his hole career. Oh wait than I gues that means he will be back with the Bears then wont he.

Did he play well? People said the same thing about Hanie after one game last year. 1 TD and 2 picks. Against the 2nd worst defense in the nfl this year. Lets be honest those late points didn't mean anything, the game was over and the Bears were just rying to make themselves look more respectable against scrubs at the end. But basically they put up 10 points in 3 1/2 quarters against the starters. You think the Packers were playing hard those last 6-7 minutes? You think when they were up 4 scores they were like "oh no here come the Bears, oh what ever will we do?"

I get a kick out the "mopey" writers asking Lovie these types of questions like he's gonna say- "yeah you guys are right, instead of spinning my wheels playing Hanie, I should have put in Mc Cown, MAYBE we would've won at least 1-game so, this last game could have some meaning. But I couldn't putin Mc Cown or try Mc Nabb, i'd be contradicting MYSELF and saying I was wr-wr-wr-wrong.

LOL That would've been the biggest indictment on Lovie since the infamous- "trust me" or "Blank is my QB". It would be laughable except Bear's management sears by this guy.

Sean haven't you guys grown weary of his "Andy Griffith", aww shucks demeanor? That's right, you've only been here a few years.

I still say he played well. He ran out of trouble several times and was not afraid to get hit. He found receivers and threw good passes when they got a little distance, and he bought them some time scrambling on several occasions, throwing accurately while on the run. He obviously is no Jay Cutler, but I suspect the Bears would be in the play-offs if he had started two of the Haney games.

Paul,

I think Caleb played well at times, but obviously, has limitations - as do the Bear receiving corps. I know Bears fans that actually believed Hanie was a viable starter for the Bears after his performance against the Packer "prevent" in last years NFC title tilt.

Interesting. Actually, I'm laughing my ass of at those fools.

I hope Bears fans have a greater appreciation for Jay Cutler. He has done more with less than anyone in the league.

Jerry, GET A SOLID LT AND WR NEXT SEASON!!!

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on December 26, 2011 12:45 PM.

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