Bears WR Kendall Wright looking for career restart with OC Dowell Loggains

Bears WR Kendall Wright looking for career restart with OC Dowell Loggains

Wide receiver Kendall Wright chose to sign with the Bears this offseason for a variety of reasons, not the least of which was a $4 million contract in a market that did not favor many receivers with extended deals and big guarantees.
 
In this case, however, the Bears offered an opportunity for Wright to reconnect with offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains, who held that position and that of passing-game coordinator with the Tennessee Titans during Wright's first two NFL seasons coming out of Baylor – seasons that saw the best catch totals of his career: 63 as a rookie in 2012, 94 in 2013.
 
For Wright, Loggains' less-is-more mindset suited the former No. 1 pick (20th overall) coming out of an improve offense with Baylor teammate Robert Griffin III.
 
"Dowell is just 'get open,'" Wright said on Wednesday via conference call. "He's not doing anything special; I just think I fit in the offense he runs pretty well. He put no limitations on my game. He didn't just tell me to play 'slot.' He let me play whatever I wanted to play, whatever position. The more you can do with him, the better you'll be."
 
The Titans had picked up the fifth-year option on Wright's rookie contract in 2015 for $7.32 million. But he was in the midst of the misfortune of playing with a quarterback dogpile in Tennessee, with the Titans using nine different quarterbacks over the span of his five seasons, including such luminaries as Alex Tanney, Jake Locker and Rusty Smith.
 
For that reason, working and developing a relationship with fellow new Bear quarterback Mike Glennon, who'd already been in touch with the receiver group via text, was not a negative. "I don't think it'll take long," Wright said, citing his experience with the Tennessee quarterback musical chairs.
 
Wright agreed to a one-year contract for a reported $4 million, another situation of the Bears bringing in a veteran but with very clear prove-it requirements. He was considered a deep threat coming into the draft, running 40-yard-dash times in the 4.4-seconds twice after a slow time at the NFL Scouting Combine.
 
He was hampered early last season by a hamstring injury, and he was a late-season scratch for missing a team meeting. He cleaned out his locker in the Titans facility at the end of the year, and said he did not expect to be in their plans for 2017, telling reporters with some emotion, "I never seen a day where I would be talking about leaving the Titans ... I mean, I never really thought about that day, it just snuck up on me, really," Wright said. "This whole year I just stayed positive and just did what I [could to] be a pro and help these young guys. They got a lot of talent and they'll be really good in the future."
 
Now his focus has turned to a new group of young receivers, another part of the attraction in Chicago, Wright said. "I think, really just the young receivers they have and a hungry quarterback in Mike Glennon, who hasn't played much but you know he can sling it."

SportsTalk Live Podcast: How long will Mike Glennon last as the starting QB?

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AP

SportsTalk Live Podcast: How long will Mike Glennon last as the starting QB?

In the latest SportsTalk Live Podcast, Dan Cahill and Jordan Bernfield join Kap on the panel. 

The Cubs lineup changes continue. So which young Cub need to play every day? The guys discuss. Plus, Jim Deshaies joins the show live to discuss the state of the Cubs’ rotation.

Mike Glennon is told that this season is his. How long will that last? 

Later, Scott Paddock discusses NASCAR’s big schedule changes for 2018 and how it affects racing at Chicagoland Speedway.

Listen to this edition of the SportsTalk Live Podcast here:

Bears QB Mike Glennon makes his role emphatically clear: ‘This year is my year’

Bears QB Mike Glennon makes his role emphatically clear: ‘This year is my year’

Mike Glennon stuck to an emphatic mantra during his first meeting with the media since the Bears drafted Mitch Trubisky last month: “This year is my year.”

It wasn’t a surprising line — what else was he supposed to say? — but it was telling in the sense that Glennon didn’t appear to be rattled by the presence of Trubisky, the franchise’s presumptive quarterback of the future. Unofficially, Glennon said some version of that line a dozen times in just over 10 minutes. 

“They brought me here to be the quarterback this year and nothing has changed,” Glennon said. “So in my mind, I have to go out and play well, and I know that, and that’s basically the bottom line.”

Will Glennon work with Trubisky, the No. 2 overall pick and presumptive quarterback of the future? Yes. But is that his main focus? No. The job of developing Trubisky falls on offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains and quarterbacks coach Dave Ragone, not the guy who the Bears committed tens of millions of dollars to to play quarterback. 

Glennon said general manager Ryan Pace called him about 10 minutes after Roger Goodell announced Trubisky’s name in Philadelphia April 27 to reassure him that he would still be the Bears’ starting quarterback in 2017. Like most everyone — including Trubisky — Glennon was surprised the Bears made the pick, but the 27-year-old said he quickly re-trained his attention back on preparing for the upcoming season. 

“I’m not worried about the future,” Glennon said. “I’m not worried about the past. I’m worried about the present and right now this is my team and that’s where my focus is.”

Glennon’s three-year, $45 million deal is structured so the Bears could cut him after the 2017 season and absorb only a $2.5 million cap hit, $500,000 more than the team took on when Jay Cutler was released in March. His contract was set up that way before the Bears snuck into Chapel Hill, N.C. for a surreptitious dinner and workout with Trubisky — he’s a bridge quarterback with an opportunity to show he’s greater than that label. 

“Even if I were to (look in hindsight) I would still have came here,” Glennon said. “Like I said, this is my year. There are no guarantees in the NFL. The majority of guys in the NFL are playing year-to-year. I’m here to prove myself that I can me the quarterback this year and going forward. But right now my focus is on winning games this year.”

“… I can only say it so many times, this year has been fully communicated that it's my year,” Glennon said. “I’m not going to worry about the future. As long as I play well, it will all work out.’