Chicago Bears quarterback Mike Glennon cemented himself in Chicago’s Week 1 starting lineup by playing his best football of the preseason in Sunday’s first half against the Titans.
With rookie Mitchell Trubisky closing the gap in recent weeks, Glennon had to be efficient and turnover-free to fend off the second overall pick.
Glennon rose to the occasion.
Glennon marched the Bears 96 yards down the field on 15 plays on their first possession, capping it off with a short touchdown pass to tight end Dion Sims. Glennon was 7-of-9 for 84 yards on the drive.
Overall, Glennon completed 11 of 18 pass attempts for 134 yards and one touchdown before Trubisky took over after halftime.
Except for top receiver Cameron Meredith‘s devastating knee injury, Glennon and the Bears had to be pleased with how the day went for the first-team offense.
QB depth chart: Barring something totally unexpected, Glennon will start at quarterback when Chicago hosts Atlanta in the regular-season opener. Trubisky initially struggled when he entered the game after halftime but later hit undrafted rookie receiver Tanner Gentry on a 45-yard touchdown. Trubisky’s final numbers: 10-of-15 for 128 yards and a touchdown, 115.4 passer rating. Connor Shaw came in late in the fourth quarter to finish it off. Veteran Mark Sanchez did not play.
When it was starters vs. starters, the Bears looked …: Like the better team. It’s just the preseason, but the Bears looked more aggressive than Tennessee — on both sides of the ball. Much of the focus was on Glennon and the offense, but Chicago’s defense got after it, with Willie Young and Akiem Hicks each recording sacks. Safety Quintin Demps also had a big hit in the open field. The Bears even blocked a punt that rookie Adam Shaheen recovered just out of the back of the end zone for a safety. Again, preseason football isn’t the best indicator of future success, but the Bears played well. It sure beats the alternative.
One reason to be concerned: Meredith’s knee injury further tests the Bears’ depth at wide receiver. Remember, Markus Wheaton has barely practiced because of his appendectomy and finger surgery, and Alshon Jeffery is now catching touchdown passes from Carson Wentz in Philadelphia. Meredith had only 66 receptions for 888 yards and four touchdowns, but he was the Bears’ best receiver. Now the pressure is really on former seventh overall pick Kevin White to step up and become something in the NFL.
That guy could start: Rookie Eddie Jackson started the game at free safety and clearly has the lead over Adrian Amos. Jackson has been pushing for the job because — unlike Amos — he’s shown a knack for breaking up/intercepting passes over the summer. Amos isn’t a bad player, but he doesn’t force any turnovers. That’s a major point of emphasis for Chicago’s defense in 2017. Jackson might also contribute in the return game depending on the amount of snaps he logs in the secondary.
Injury woes: Aside from Meredith, the Bears lost cornerback Prince Amukamara to an ankle injury on the first play of the game. Amukamara’s latest setback is so unfortunate because he just had returned from a strained hamstring. Also, second-year linebacker Leonard Floyd suffered a foot injury and veteran linebacker Dan Skuta was evaluated for a concussion.
Snap to it: The Bears might have also lost long snapper Patrick Scales to a significant knee injury on Sunday. Scales did not return after being carted back to the locker room in the second quarter. Chicago used backup offensive lineman Bradley Sowell as its snapper to finish out the game. Sowell did a nice job — given the circumstances — but don’t be surprised to see the Bears sign or claim another long snapper before Week 1.