Opinion: Dalton won’t make a difference

After years of missteps, Bears fans shouldn’t get their hopes up about recent quarterback signings

The+Chicago+Bears+have+history+of+picking+the+wrong+quarterback+for+their+roster.+This+year%27s+pick+Andy+Dalton+may+continue+that+tradition.

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The Chicago Bears have history of picking the wrong quarterback for their roster. This year’s pick Andy Dalton may continue that tradition.

Madison Harvey, Staff Writer

In recent years, the quarterback situation for the Chicago Bears has been anything but ideal. From Jay Cutler to Mitchell Trubisky to Nick Foles, a number of players have filled that role for the Bears. Many fans were happy to see former quarterback Trubisky go, but they shouldn’t get too excited about the arrival of Andy Dalton. 

Bears fans had hopes of pursuing Russell Wilson, but when he chose to remain in Seattle, they had to settle for a less enticing option. Dalton signed with Chicago in mid-March in a contract allowing him to earn up to $13 million in just a single year. He is set to be the starting quarterback, backed up by Nick Foles. 

Though Trubisky wasn’t known for his success with the Bears, this move doesn’t seem to help anybody. It’s a well-known fact that the quarterback is the leader on the field, and constantly changing the leader can cause a divide in team chemistry, and ultimately a less successful campaign. 

During the offseason, Chicago’s main priority was to find a quarterback, and in the process, they didn’t make any other big signings. This means that most of the lineup will remain the same as the 2020 team with an even record of eight wins and eight losses. Though there are some really talented players, such as Khalil Mack and Allen Robinson, there are many gaps and lacking areas that can’t be fixed by a new quarterback.

By now, it’s pretty clear that this season for the Bears won’t be much different than the last, but could it be worse? Trubisky’s statistics in the past few seasons were mediocre at best, but Dalton’s were even less impressive. Notable stats include a losing record in each of the last five seasons, 29th overall quarterback ranking last season, and a 64% completion percentage. 

Some fans still have hope for the upcoming season, claiming that Dalton will be a fresh start for the team, after all, he hasn’t played with any of his new teammates in the past. The group could instantly click, and have a more successful season than anybody could predict-except all of this is highly unlikely. 

With the 2021 NFL Draft quickly approaching, Chicago could also draft a quarterback, but the biggest names are set to be taken early in the first round, and the Bears’ first pick lands in the twentieth spot in the first round. At this point in the draft, there are typically still quarterbacks up for grabs, but the best options are already gone. A mock draft created by CBS sets them up with Virginia Tech’s cornerback Caleb Farley. Though he is a smart choice, he isn’t exactly a quarterback, which is ultimately what they need.

The 102nd season of the NFL begins in early September, leaving the Bears with just the draft and the summer to sort out a starting lineup. For now, the best and most obvious option seems to be to start Andy Dalton with Nick Foles backing him up, and hope for a higher pick in the 2022 draft. It may not be a Super Bowl-winning lineup, but the 2021 Chicago Bears could still have a mediocre season.