Josh McCown says he has talked to four teams, wants to start


After playing well in five starts while filling in for Jay Cutler last season, Josh McCown wants to be a starting quarterback in 2014. And he thinks there are teams willing to give him the opportunity to do that.

McCown said on Mike & Mike that some teams have already expressed interest in signing him when he officially becomes a free agent on Tuesday afternoon.

“We’ve talked to four teams,” McCown said. “There have been good discussions and we’ll take those as they come and evaluate those situations.”

McCown said he loved playing in Chicago and thinks of Cutler as a brother. But McCown has no chance to compete for the starting job in Chicago, and he doesn’t want to spend 2014 holding a clipboard.

“To leave Chicago it will be a situation where I’m looking to compete to start, or to start, and to grow more as a player,” McCown said. “The only way you can do that as a player is on the field. So that will definitely be something that we’re looking at.”

It’s kind of amazing that the 34-year-old McCown is viewed as a potential starter, considering that the NFL had more or less given up on him a couple years ago. But McCown threw 13 touchdown passes and just one interception and had better numbers than Cutler last year, and he’s hoping that he proved he has enough left that he can be some team’s starter.

“Two years ago I was coaching high school football,” McCown said. “You never know what’s going to happen.”

54 responses to “Josh McCown says he has talked to four teams, wants to start

  1. As much as I was happy for his success last year and think he deserves a shot.. I don’t think he’ll get it. He’s a 34 year old with practically no experience starting with no flashy qualities. Teams aren’t (usuall) looking for a 1-2 year starter.
    Good luck Josh!

  2. It will very interesting to see how this plays out. Yeah he had an insanely efficient run while Cutler was out last year…but he’s going to be 35, has been OK his entire career (career QB Rating of 77.5) and was playing with arguably the top WR duo in the game in Chicago. I’d be wary to pay him any sort of meaningful $.

  3. In my case he’s intriguing and here’s the main reason – if he was to be my starter with our defense and running game he’d be successful. Ball control, high completions, low turnovers…that would work for the Jets. Any game last year that Geno Smith played like that we won…so, I’d like to bring him in to compete with Smith for the job and may the best man win.

    Damn, free agency is gonna be crazy this year!

  4. Much success to Josh wherever he lands. I hope we can keep him. He played his position well and didn’t cry about it once Jay came back.

  5. Josh is a good quarterback but his age will make teams think twice. He was always the guy other teams were looking to replace. For some reason all the previous teams he played for didn’t want Josh to be the guy. They all thought the grass was greener with the next guy up. Curious.

  6. He’s better than some who are locked in as starters. Every team in the league should want him as a backup at the very least.

  7. Texans should get him, draft Sammy Watkins to pair with Andre Johnson since hrs only got a few years left and then you’ve got Josh a situation like he had in Chicago last year with Marshal n Jeffrey.

  8. Classy guy from good ole Charlotte…excellent people in NC. My selfishness says Josh belongs in Chicago in the system he’s excelled at but its time to maximize potential $ for his family.

    God bless brother and good luck in 2014.

  9. You can’t argue with the 13TD/1 INT season. However…..

    1. He’s been a backup/out of football for a reason – limited physical skill set.
    2. Trestman’s offense – you go elsewhere and you don’t have Marshall/Jefferies/Bennett/Forte. It’s a real QB friendly system.
    3. Even though he only threw 1 INT, in those games he threw at least 6 passes I can recall that hit DBs in the hands and might have been TOs.
    4. Small sample size. Only played 4-4.5 games.

    I certainly wish him well. He is a terrific backup. I don’t believe he is a 16 game starter and I certainly don’t think he’s a 10TD:1 INT QB (well, few are!).

  10. Sign with Oakland !!
    They’re looking for a starter
    Not the greatest OL
    Not the greatest WRs
    But, you will start and help a team in the doldrums

  11. Mar 10, 2014 10:30 AM
    Green Bay should be all over this guy, seeing as how their starter is soft and can’t stay on the field for any sustained period of time.

    That is very unfair to Rogers. Not his fault the team was relying on Beluga coming back and he injured himself terrible in a family scrimmage game. NOt his fault fat arse Sherrod was so out of shape that he never starting playing to mid season. Not his fault Newhouse has never developed into anything but a bust. Not his fault the 4th round pick made starter by default. Not his fault they let a pro bowl center walk to save a buck, not his fault the other linemen are shuffled around every play and look and play confused.

    It is his fault that he holds the ball too long looking for the perfect pass and gets creamed more than any other QB. Scarry to think how good he really could be with a O line like Manning has.

  12. Much like Cassel in Minnesota, he should be good for a team that will be drafting a QB this year and wants/needs a fill in starter for 1-2 years tops. 2 years at about $8 mil total seems logical.

  13. First he had a host of 6’5 talented receivers and a pretty decent O line to play behind. Maybe that is what he lacked all along. Maybe there are a lot of guys like him that never had talent to support him?

    I mean what if Jamarcus Russel had some talent maybe, just maybe…… No forget that idea. Jamarcus had an ass that was wider than my snow shovel when he arrived at the Raiders. 325 is a little on the heavy side for a mobile QB. LOL

    I agree your only going to pay so much for a 34 year old when there are some very fine young talented players in the draft and many of these teams pick early.

  14. Any team that’s considering signing a 35 yo career back-up who was out of the league coaching high school football 2 years ago, to be their starting QB is clearly run by clowns. So I expect the Browns are seriously talking to him.

  15. Maybe he and Matt Flynn can pair up and become the bench brothers.
    I would have loved to be in Flynn’s position. Three teams paying me a ton o money, letting me sit on the bench, cash those big checks and then move on.
    How often does one get a chance to do nothing for his money and make big money doing it.

  16. Even though 34/35 is a bit older for an NFL quarterback, I think his body might be a bit younger since he was a backup and then out of football. There is a bit less wear and tear on him than when Cutler week be 35.

  17. Anyone who says he’s too old needs to remember that Rich Gannon, who had one of the best five-year stretches I’ve ever seen from 1999 to 2004 with the Raiders. He went to four Pro Bowls, won an MVP award and led the Raiders to the Superbowl, all after age 34.

  18. Given his track record, I can’t see McCown having the same kind of success anywhere else that he had last year with the Bears’ weapons (Forte, Jeffrey and Marshall) and Trestman’s system.

  19. Beware:
    McCown in my eyes is in the same category as ex-Buffalo Bill Ryan Fitzpatrick.
    Like Fitzpatrick, McCown can get the job done with the right pieces around him. Both Quarterback’s will surprise you with their arm strength and mobility. Both are smart and able to run pretty much any play you present to them with ease, so the playbook can be extremely complicated, which is a huge plus. Both players develop favorite targets that they will utilize when in trouble, sometimes too much which becomes predictable. Both McCown and Fitzpatrick have proven that when times get tough and the starter goes down, that they are both fully capable of coming in on short or no notice at all and rallying their respected team’s to a win. Both are well respected by their peers, both easily coached. Their most common trait IMO is the fact that both QB’s are and always will be career backup’s. Neither player is capable of taking their game to that next level, the playoffs and super bowl, which is the one thing that makes a good QB great. At times both play very well under pressure, but it is when they are named starters and get comfortable is when they struggle and the true colors come out. McCown is not starter material, just like the way Fitzpatrick wasn’t. Both are viable #2’s.

  20. He is not starter material, not for a 16 game season anyways. His stats last season are certainly misleading. If Alshon Jeffery isn’t making highlight reel catch after highlight reel catch McCown’s numbers would not be all that impressive. One thing he was extremely lucky with was the lack of INT’s. His best statistical game was against the Cowboys and he should have had 4 passes intercepted, but the Dallas defenders dropped them.
    There is a reason Josh was out of football, because all 32 teams kind of thought he sucked at playing QB. There was plenty of tape on him and he was on plenty of teams rosters so it is not like he was some unknown. The Bears brought him in as a back-up a few years ago, he played a few games, was below average and was not brought back. He was out of football and then the Bears brought him back again.
    He played the best football of his career last season and I hope for he and his family’s sake he cashes in somewhere.

  21. Josh, I hope you know how much you’re appreciated for stepping up when your number was called. I TRULY hate to see you anywhere else but here with the Bears, but, you’ve earned what’s coming to you and wherever you wind up, I hope you get as much “mileage” out of it as a player could get! All the best……..

  22. Yeah, he played great in relief of Cutler. But Tressman had a good offensive system for him and he had a great receiving corp. Whoever gives him a starting job better be prepared with good offensive players to support him. They will not win if they are to consider him their number one offensive player. He is still simply a good backup. It’s too bad the Bears just can’t keep him as a backup.

  23. Surprised the Vikings aren’t interested. They should know him very well considering he knocked them out of the playoffs in 2003 playing for the last place Cardinals on a 4th down play with no time left in the game. Well that and the fact that the Vikings don’t have a NFL Qb on their roster at the moment.

  24. Cleveland bringing him in to start for a year, while Hoyer comes all the way back from his knee injury and drafting a QB to develop in the second or third round makes sense. You give yourself someone more reliable, cut bait on Weeden and Campbell, and utilize both first round choices on filling holes like a wide receiver and running back.

  25. elliottcovert says:
    Mar 10, 2014 11:06 AM
    Anyone who says he’s too old needs to remember that Rich Gannon, who had one of the best five-year stretches I’ve ever seen from 1999 to 2004 with the Raiders. He went to four Pro Bowls, won an MVP award and led the Raiders to the Superbowl, all after age 34.


    Marc Trestman was Gannon’s coach that year…..Once again Trestman is not included in McCown’s contract unless it’s with the Bears!

  26. People are getting very carried away with one Josh McCown , they forgot he was only playing with the 2 BEST WR tandem you could say in football ,And they HIDE alot of UGLY passes coming their way even ones that should have been intercepted,, Why you think the head coach didn’t get carried away with the hype and put back in Cutler.Not saying thats even an ideal alternative , but it is what it is.

  27. He would start for us again if hes brought in for a second time. He would be a perfect transition QB to help mold the QB we take in this years draft (NOT in the 1st rd) or next years draft.


  28. Older QB’s can be effective… Jake Plummer helped the Broncos get to the AFC Championship game and could have won the Super Bowl if the Steelers didn’t get so hot at the time. I hope a team gives the guy a shot.

  29. Hope he goes somewhere to a system similar to what they’re running in Chicago because if not, he’s toast! That was a QB friendly system where he could throw most of his guys open. Thats pretty much what he was doing. If they ask him to take 5-7 step drops ALL game long, then he will be right back where we last saw him……on the sidelines holding a clipboard with his hat on backwards. Also given the fact that he was surrounded by a nasty assortment of offensive weapons and a decent OL……well, I think all those factors BETTER be there for him to continue to flourish as he did when he got his chance last season. Otherwise…again…..TOAST!!

  30. steelerben says:
    “utilize both first round choices on filling holes like a wide receiver and running back.”
    If any team drafts a RB in the first two rounds in today’s NFL you should hope that is not a team you are a fan of. Would be nice if it was a divisional rival though.
    The vast majority of the elite RB’s from one season to the next are low round picks (or even undrafted players). It is a complete waste of a pick to draft a RB in the first few rounds.

  31. I was thrilled to see what McCown did in Cutler’s absence. However, the meatballs that think he should replace Cutler are fools. If anything, McCown’s success is a testament to Marc Trestman’s offense and the weapons that have been assembled in Chicago. If Cutler can stay healthy, the Bears have the (can’t believe I am saying this) best offense in the NFC North. The Packers are waning in talent, Minnesota is a mess, and the Lions are, the Lions (although I have a mancrush on Megatron).

    So, all things considered, I don’t blame McCown if he can get a starting gig with extra $$. However, I bet dollars to donuts he will flounder in a different system with inferior weapons. I would love it if Chicago would pay him decent money as insurance. It is clear he can do it and I think in the end he would be happier. Money talks though but can’t make you happy

  32. itsfootballbaby says:
    Mar 10, 2014 10:24 AM
    If Chicago were smart they would’ve dumped crybaby Cutler and kept McCown.

    And if you knew anything about football you would have kept that statement to yourself.

  33. Guys- he didn’t say he was looking for an opportunity to be someone’s starter for the next 10 years. He said he was looking for the opportunity to start next year.

    Lots of teams will be drafting “QBs of the future” this year. I could easily see one of these teams viewing McCown as a 1-2 year bridge starter who not only is extremely efficient with the ball and doesn’t turn it over, but hopefully could be a good influence and pass some of these traits on to the starter in waiting.

    Who would you rather have starting for you while you developed a young rookie- a guy like McCown who plays smart, can read defenses and never turns the ball over, or a guy the same age like Mike Vick, who could teach your rookie all kinds of bad habits?

  34. Cleveland bringing him in makes a ton of sense. He would start week 1 for sure.

    He’s make a great mentor for any rookie they draft and Hoyer is probably a better 2nd or 3rd string guy anyway.

    I would also think he would start in Oak or TB.

  35. If the Jags o-line can hold up, he might be a perfect fit for them for a couple years.

    That would give the Jags a couple years to map out the “what-ifs” of the next few drafts and start following some of the hotshot college CB’s that might be coming out.

  36. Love Josh McCown and his attitude and he’s a great backup QB. It’s been said in the previous posts about the weapons he will need to be successful with other teams, as well as the QB friendly schemes. Let’s not forget that he played behind a pretty darn good O line that kept him pretty clean during his 4 – 5 games. It’s going to be hard to replicate those stats with marginal protection.

  37. Houston could plug this guy in as a stop gap for a year until guys like Marriota come out next year. Draft Clowney and you have a dominant D with watt for the next 5-7 years. They can also take a flier on a guy like garrapolo in the 2nd rd to learn under a vet.

    Be smart.

  38. Terrible decision by McCown, which doesn’t surprise me since most athletes these days are influenced by Sports Agents and idiot friends who don’t have the players best interest in mind. Back up QB in Chicago has to be the best job in the world. If Cutler sucks he gets to start anyway, if cutler gets hurt he starts anyway, if not he gets to sit on the bench and collect millions of dollars and be the most popular guy in Chicago. He has to know his success was due to Tresman’s system and the wide receivers he had in Chicago. He wont be good next year going to a system he has no previous work in and to a team without nearly the talent the bears had last year (if your team is looking for a starting QB your prob not a good team to begin with). Good luck though glad you wont be here in Chicago giving bears fans false hope…

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