The Chicago Bears signed Jimmy Clausen earlier this month as a potential backup to Jay Cutler, and the former Notre Dame star may actually have a shot at making the team. According to Michael C. Wright of ESPNChicago.com, Clausen “caught the coaching staff’s attention” during minicamp this week.
“We’re going through the process today of trying to work a little bit with our roster,” Bears coach Marc Trestman said on Thursday. “I think that Jimmy has competed, and done a good job for the time that he’s been here. I expect that he’ll be with us.”
The Bears signed Clausen just 10 days before minicamp. Jordan Palmer is currently the team’s No. 2 quarterback, but he reportedly struggled during minicamp while Clausen impressed Chicago’s coaches. Trestman said he was impressed by what Clausen did off the field as much as on it.
“No. 1 is how he handled the room. That room is hugely important; the chemistry, the karma, whatever you want to call it,” Trestman said. “In that room, the communication’s got to be good. Jimmy’s done a very good job, very maturely fit in and taken the place of trying to learn and work to learn the offense. He’s grinded at it. He spent long hours here.”
Trestman added that he expects Clausen to be one of the guys the team brings back. Clausen, who signed a one-year, $645,000 deal with the Bears, has not played in an NFL game since his rookie season in 2010. The Carolina Panthers drafted him in the second round that year, but Clausen struggled with just three touchdown passes and nine interceptions in 13 games. They drafted Cam Newton the next year.
Depending on how he has developed while holding a clipboard over the past few years, Clausen could be a viable backup option.