The Denver Broncos released quarterback Kyle Orton today. Couple that with the fact the Chicago Bears lost their quarterback, Jay Cutler, for an extended period with a broken thumb, put two and two together and you can probably see how Orton could end up in Chicago.
Orton, AKA The Neck Beard, played for the Bears from 2005-08 and was dealt to the Broncos as part of the trade that brought Cutler to Chicago. Perhaps the one negative for the Bears, is he hasn’t played under offensive coordinator Mike Martz, who’s only been with the team this season and last.
On the other hand, he would be reunited with head coach Lovie Smith and is probably an upgrade over the Bears’ current option, Caleb Hanie.
Unfortunately for the Bears, Orton isn’t a free agent. The team will have to make a waiver claim and, if successful, pick up the remainder of the quarterback’s contract, which is said to be around $2.5 million.
The reason this isn’t a foregone conclusion is two other teams who lost their starting quarterbacks — Kansas City and Houston — have higher priority in the waiver order than Chicago.
The process will be finalized Wednesday afternoon. If no one claims Orton, he becomes a free agent.
Orton threw for 979 yards, eight touchdowns and seven interceptions in five starts this season with Denver.