Wednesday, October 30, 2013
QB Watch: Bears' Josh McCown
By Michael C. Wright
A weekly examination of the Chicago Bears’ quarterback play.
Rewind: Josh McCown entered the club's Oct. 20 game for an injured Jay Cutler at the 9:47 mark of the second quarter and scrambled for an 11-yard gain on first down before throwing incomplete to Matt Forte the next play to end the drive. McCown eventually finished with a passer rating of 119.6 in just a little more than a half of action with a touchdown and no turnovers.
Fast-forward: With a bye week and extra prep time for Monday night’s matchup against the Green Bay Packers, McCown has exhibited confidence in the locker room and on the practice field, and expects to fill in for Cutler with little to no drop-off in production. McCown is a little more willing than Cutler to take off and scramble for yardage when things break down, and his athleticism is very similar to that of the starter. Count on McCown scrambling some against the Packers, but he’ll also try to lean on Brandon Marshall early because his involvement is crucial to success for Chicago.
Lean on cast; stay who you are: The Bears believe strongly in McCown’s ability to fill in successfully for Cutler, and they’ll play hard for him. So if adversity rears its head against the Packers, it’s important for McCown to maintain his cool to make sure things don’t snowball on the offense. McCown also needs to lean on his strong supporting cast, and not feel like he needs to carry the offense all alone. All he’s got to do is distribute the ball to the playmakers, and let them all do their jobs, while not turning over the ball with fumbles or passes forced into coverage.
Prediction: The extra preparation should make for an eye-opening performance from McCown. Having been a part of the offense from the time Marc Trestman laid the foundation, McCown is just as much of a master of the offense as Cutler. Look for an efficient performance from McCown, where his passer rating is somewhere in the high 80s to 90s with limited turnovers.