Yesterday, I wrote how it was sounding quite unlikely that Jay Cutler would suit up on Monday night for the Bears against the 49ers in San Francisco, after suffering a concussion in week 10 against the Texans.
And today, the Bears officially announced that Cutler will indeed be inactive for the game, and Jason Campbell will start at quarterback:
LM: #Bears have announced that QB Jason Campbell will start Monday night's game at San Francisco.Smart call by the Bears, and really, I don't feel much worse about their chances in this game. Why's that? Here's what I had to say yesterday in regards to the situation:
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) November 16, 2012
Cutler of course has the propensity to turn the ball over on occasion, and remember he threw five interceptions (and no touchdowns) in the Bears' 10-6 primetime loss at San Francisco in 2009.
Campbell, on the other hand, has only thrown over two interceptions in a game once in his NFL career, which includes 70 games started at quarterback. In 2008 with the Redskins, he led the NFL with the lowest 1.2 interception percentage. He is tied for fourth among active NFL quarterbacks in lowest career interception percentage at 2.3%, putting him only behind Aaron Rodgers (1.8), Tom Brady (2.1), and Matt Ryan (2.2).
Does Campbell have the the big-play ability and overall physical tools Cutler does? Definitely not, but against the 49ers' defense, and with the defense the Bears are playing this season, this game may just come down to not making mistakes (hey, the Texans game did). And Campbell's shown a great track record in that department.
So, yeah, I think the Bears are very capable of winning this game with Jason Campbell at quarterback. Limit the mistakes on offense, make a big offensive play or two, play defense like the team has all year, and there's no reason they can't win the football game. I'm not predicting a win, but just saying it can definitely happen.
Also, the team announced that rookie defensive end Shea McClellin will miss the game due to the concussion he suffered against the Texans. It's also not a surprise, given the fact that he's a rookie first-round pick that the Bears hope to have in good health for perhaps the next decade, and because he has a concussion history going back to his college days at Boise State. The Bears are wisely going to be extra cautious with him.
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