There was a bit of a media high on Kyle Orton this week after he threw 3 TDs in a win over the Philadelphia Eagles.
Orton was claimed as the savior by a few articles, and one even wrote about how Orton's 5 TDs in the last two weeks are 2nd only to Brett Favre's 9 TDs.
But now it's a few days after the win, and after everyone's taken the time to really take in what went on in the game... they're not so high on Kyle Orton anymore.
For all the pros you could list about Orton: He's set career highs for TDs and passing yards in his last two outings for example - You can list even more cons: He's the lowest rated passer in the league on passes of 20 yards or more, his passer rating seems to be regressing with each game as Orton posted his 2nd lowest rating of the season, his ranking has dropped to 19th in the league out of 32 passers in the NFL, and most important of all - he's turning the ball over more than practically any other QB in the NFL.
In his last two games, Orton has turned the ball over a total of 7 times - tied for the most in the league with Kurt Warner. He's thrown 4 INTs and lost 3 fumbles and has put the offense in the position of losing two games that they should have won either due to an inability to move the ball consistently or the ability to consistently turn the ball over.
I say that's the worst of all, because turnovers were the exact reason Grossman wasn't picked to start, and the reason that Orton was. Orton wasn't picked because he was supposed to lead game winning drives (which he hasn't), or throw up big plays (which he hasn't); he was picked because he was the least likely to give the ball away (which he HAS). He was named the starter because he was supposed to be the guy that won't lose games for you - and last Sunday, if the Bears defense hadn't ended with an amazing goal line stand - Orton could've put a THIRD loss under his belt.
His inability to make deep throws, and his play changing audibles cost us in week 2 against the Panthers. His interceptions, fumbles and inability to capitalize on turnovers against the Bucs cost us in week 3, and a morbid second half in which his 3 consecutive 2nd half turnovers put the Eagles in business to take the lead 3 different times nearly cost us another game. Luckily, the Bears defense bailed him out on each occasion, including one goal line stand that nobody will ever forget - I'm just glad Westrbook wasn't back there otherwise the Bears would be 1-3 right now instead of 2-2.
And although the media has chosen to pull the neckbeard over their eyes, just so they can feel right in their justification that anyone could run this offense better than Rex Grossman, the fact remains that the Bears offense hasn't been pulling it's weight - largely because of an inept passing attack that has only managed to take off for about 4 of the last 16 quarters of play.
However, the one source that matters, the Chiacago Bears themselves, have made it clear to Orton that his sudden likeness for giving the ball away isn't something that can continue. The front page of the Bears website today headlines with a picture of Orton and a tag line reading: "NO MORE GIFTS PLEASE". The article goes on to talk about how Orton can't continue to turn the ball over like he is right now.
I'm simply and utterly confused - if Orton's turning the ball over, which is supposed to be his strength... what good is he doing us out there? As I said before, his passer rating is the worst in the league on passes over 20 yards, and most of his yards are accumulated thanks to excellent moves by the receivers in yards after the catch. And excluding his one good half last Sunday, most of Orton's balls have been underthrown or overhthrown horribly and have cost us points. He can thank Lloyd and his amazing acrobatic catches for any "big plays" he seems to have. The argument of his strength in pocket presence quickly fell apart when after feeling the pressure against the Bucs, he spun idiotically in a circle before turning and practically handing the ball to Gaines Adams who returned it for a TD. And Orton's red zone efficiency dropped when in the second half he threw a bad ball into the end zone right into the waiting arms of an Eagles cornerback.
7 turnovers in the last 2 games? That's better than Rex? Go ahead and keep thinking that. In the meantime, I'll bide my time until the Bears realize the mistake they made in putting that "Captain" patch on Orton's jersey.
I'd rather have the chance for big plays and 4th quarter comebacks with Rex if I have to put up with turnovers anyway from Orton.