MORRISSEY: Mike Glennon is up against something bigger than himself


BOURBONNAIS — Poor Mike Glennon. He says he doesn’t know about the troops massing at his borders. The accompanying wall of noise also is news to him, possibly because he has a finger in each ear and he’s humming.

Hurricane Mitch. Mitch Mania. President Trub. Whatever you want to call it, Glennon is up against something bigger than himself.

If you think I’m overstating the public outcry for the Bears to insert rookie quarterback Mitch Trubisky into the starting lineup after one preseason game, listen to the comparison coach John Fox made Sunday when asked if he could remember a similar ado being made about a rookie quarterback’s debut.

“The first time we threw Tim Tebow out there in Denver, it was pretty similar,’’ Fox said. “Maybe the awareness on the outside. It brought quite a bit of attention.’’

Bears quarterback Mike Glennon passes against the Broncos during a preseason game at Soldier Field on Thursday. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Jeez. And Tebow had God starting the Wave for him.

Is this where we’re at with Trubisky already?

The difference here is that the Bears’ top pick actually appears capable of playing quarterback in the NFL. It’s only one game, but he did complete 18 of 25 passes for 166 yards and a touchdown against the Broncos on Thursday night. That led to a 103.1 passer rating.

It’s why much of a Chicago is impatiently tapping its toe, looking at its watch and wondering when Trubisky Time will be here. The impatience level was ratcheted up even more Sunday when the Chiefs elevated first-round pick Patrick Mahomes II from third string to second string after his impressive debut Friday night.

Trubisky played with the second group during Sunday’s practice but only because Glennon’s backup, Mark Sanchez, sat out with a bruised ankle. Trubisky looked impressive, connecting on a deep pass with Tanner Gentry during a two-minute drill. Glennon had a pick-six reminiscent of the one he threw against the Broncos. He left that game with a 0.0 passer rating.

He says he hasn’t paid much attention to all the attention Trubisky has been getting since Thursday.

“I really don’t get online,’’ he said. “I mean, I’ve watched some preseason games but just avoid the possible distraction of hearing what people may say. All that really matters is the coaches and players in the locker room and what they have to say. That’s where my focus is.’’

Not long after the Bears traded up one spot to take Trubisky with the second overall pick, Glennon made it clear to media members that “this is my year.’’ He said it over and over again. I wonder if, deep down, he feels a little less like it’s his year now.

It’s fair to say that Glennon has never known this kind of pressure. And, yes, I know he was a starter for a season with the Buccaneers. But this is Chicago, not Tampa, a smaller, sun-numbed city. And he didn’t have anybody breathing down his neck with the Bucs. The breathing he hears now is Trubisky running full speed to his right and hitting a receiver in mid-stride.

It’s also fair to say that no quarterback who was sure he was going to be the starter has ever felt so much pressure going into the second preseason game of any season. That’s where we’re at because of Trubisky, after just one game. Again: Jeez.

Glennon has the feel of an innocent bystander here. Minding his own business. Trying to do what he’s supposed to do. And a car hitting him nonetheless.

But innocent bystanders usually don’t throw ugly interceptions. And the car usually isn’t the first-round pick’s 1997 Toyota Camry.

“The good and the bad of the preseason is that was one quarter and if it was a full game, hopefully we would have responded and then it’s not quite as big of a deal,’’ Glennon said. “But when it’s a preseason game and that’s all you do, it kind of leaves you with a sour taste in your mouth.’’

One game into the preseason, the Bears seem more worried about protecting Glennon’s confidence than Trubisky’s. If they really are intent on Glennon as their starter, that’s not a good sign.

He said he understands that there might be some discussions going on among fans and media members over who should be the team’s starting quarterback. He doesn’t want to get caught up in it. But the noise is so loud that it will eventually find its way to his ears. He’d have an easier time blocking out Andre Drummond.

This is bigger than him. The only way it stops being that way is if Trubisky comes down to earth. And if public sentiment is any indication, that’s never, ever going to happen.

Poor Mike Glennon.

 



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