Caleb Hanie is disappointed,will ‘keep grinding’
By Mark Potash firstname.lastname@example.org December 21, 2011 9:10PM
Bears quarterback Caleb Hanie sits on the turf after a fourth quarter sack forced a fourth down punt as the Chicago Bears lost 38-14 to the Seattle Seahawks Sunday December 18, 2011 at Soldier Field. | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times
Updated: January 23, 2012 11:05AM
Obviously disappointed at losing his starting job, Caleb Hanie didn’t have much else to offer when asked about coach Lovie Smith’s decision to start Josh McCown on Sunday against the Packers. There’s not much he can do.
‘‘Just keep working every day, keep grinding,’’ Hanie said. ‘‘That’s all you can do. Try to fix all the mistakes that you make and learn from them. [I’m] obviously disappointed. I don’t want to play bad ever or lose games. It is what it is at this point. You just kind of roll with it.’’
Hanie had no explanation for his disappointing performance in four games in place of Jay Cutler. He completed 50 percent of his passes (51-for-102) and threw three touchdown passes and nine interceptions for a 41.8 passer rating.
Two of the interceptions were returned for touchdowns in the Bears’ 38-14 loss Sunday against the Seahawks. And Kamerion Wimbley’s 73-yard interception return was a game-changing play in the Bears’ loss to the Raiders.
But Hanie didn’t get much help. A questionable play call on second-and-one led to Wimbley’s interception. Marion Barber had a critical penalty that nullified a four-yard touchdown pass and Roy Williams bobbled a touchdown pass that was intercepted in the end zone in a 10-3 loss to the Chiefs. And Barber had two costly gaffes in an overtime loss to the Broncos — running out of bounds to stop the clock late in regulation and fumbling in overtime.
An unrestricted free agent after this season, Hanie refused to point fingers. ‘‘Just disappointed,’’ he said when asked if he was disappointed more in himself or other circumstances that led to his demise.
So what went wrong? Offensive coordinator Mike Martz wasn’t about to tackle that one after practice Wednesday.
‘‘Oh, I’m not sure,’’ Martz said. ‘‘I think there are probably some reasons. Those are all things we have to look back at and reflect and make sure that we spend time going over that with Caleb and make sure we can fix that.’’
Martz said Hanie could benefit from taking a step back and watching instead of playing.
‘‘Happens all the time,’’ Martz said. ‘‘And I think this is very important for Caleb, to step back now and take a deep breath because he was making pretty good progress. He needs to regroup. He certainly has the ability to play. And then when he gets another opportunity, I think he’s much better prepared for it in a lot of respects.’’