Clausen threw an interception. Palmer didn’t. Both quarterbacks were hurt by drops.
In the two exhibition games, both have done their best work with and against third-stringers, although Palmer threw a TD pass with the second string in the opener.
Palmer, then, looks like he’s ahead in the battle to back up Jay Cutler. Clausen, though, has the stronger arm.
Will the decision come down to which quarterback Marc Trestman believes will make the fewest mistakes or the one who can produce the most points?
Being safe with the football doesn’t necessarily mean you can put it in the end zone and win games. The safe quarterback is more reliable because he usually doesn’t take chances.
The quarterback who produces points or is a threat to produce points from anywhere on the field likely has a bigger arm and is willing to risk the deep ball to make explosive plays.
Clausen is more likely to produce explosive plays. He has the bigger arm and can score from anywhere on the field. He also has been able to do it without looking reckless.
I will say, however, it looked like his teammates hated him, what with the penalties on one particular drive. First-and-35, Jimmy. You don’t have to win the game, just tie it.
Palmer is more likely to take the checkdown, not unlike softer-armed Josh McCown last season.
In the third quarter, Clausen dropped a sweet pass in the bucket to Josh Morgan, who leaped and then absorbed a big hit for an 18-yard gain. That’s your likely No. 2 quarterback and No. 3 receiver making a play.
No, wait, in the fourth quarter, Palmer tossed a sweet rainbow to tight end Matthew Mulligan on a seam route that gained 23 yards to the Jags 2 and set up a Ka’Deem Carey score. That might be your No. 2 quarterback and your No. 2 tight end making a play.
Clausen also showed his stronger arm with a back-shoulder bullet on a out pattern that Josh Bellamy bobbled as he fell out of bounds.
Carey dropped a pass that showed Palmer’s ability to run through his progressions and make a play the way Clausen did last week.
Clausen had to fight cruddy headsets, managing to call the right play, even if it wasn’t an explosive one, and I still think Clausen wins the backup battle, but Palmer won Thursday night.
Wait, that was Jared Allen’s debut?
He was such a non-factor as a pass rusher that you’d think Julius Peppers was still here.
Worse, the Bears pass rush was better without him the week before.
Heck, the Bears everything was better the week before. The Bears everything against the Jaguars picked last year’s scab.
The Bears starting defense looked undisciplined and inept, getting suckered on the Jaguars misdirection and allowing gash plays because they appeared ill-equipped to deal with a hurry-up offense.
At least they didn’t have to waste a timeout in the first minute of the game the way they did last week against the Eagles.
But that was the Eagles. Chip Kelly’s Eagles, a good team that stresses the no-huddle offense.
These were the Jaguars, who are so bad that they’re the exhibition game you play before you play exhibition games.
The troubling thing about the Bears defense against the Jaguars was that it reminded you of the nightmare that was last season --- the nightmare that wasn’t supposed to happen again.
No pass rush, no run-stopping, no nothing that gave anybody confidence in Mel Tucker or the new bodies on the defense.
On a third-and-12, the Jags went for 20. That was the house special at Mel’s Diner last season. Stop serving up that garbage.
Geez, if Chad Henne is going to do that to the Bears starting defense, then what will real quarterbacks with real teams do?
If injuries along the offensive line aren’t a big deal, then why have the Bears starters stunk with Matt Forte running the ball for a second consecutive game? I’ll hang up and listen for my answer.
But at least the pass protection was outstanding, with a special nod to suddenly famous Michael Ola. And don’t underestimate Jay Cutler’s accuracy, which hasn’t been his best asset.
Eric Weems ran into his own player on the first kickoff return. Then he fumbled the second one. Then he fell down short of the 20 on the third one. Raise your hand if you think Weems as a kick returner is an exercise in futility.
The Bears kickoff coverage remains painful to watch, too, and I’m thinking, Joe DeCamillis needs a rule outlawing kickoffs altogether.
I saw Shea McClellin flash on a couple run plays. And I saw him get destroyed on a 17-yard run up the middle and trail and flail in coverage. He’s guaranteed a roster spot? Seriously?
Look at you, John Bostic, blowing up a third-and-1 run for a four-yard loss.
Trevor Scott makes plays.
Kelvin Hayden better hope nobody on the coaching staff saw the game.
Ditto, Ryan Mundy.
I suppose the Seahawks will show us next Friday who us who the Bears starting safeties are because nobody knows yet, and that goes for Bears coaches.
The trainers apparently saved the Bears a tough choice: Playing Chris Conte in front of home fans or giving him his first action after surgery against the defending Super Bowl champions.
Pat O’Donnell bombed a punt 51 yards with hang time better than five seconds after Tress Way blew a chance to pin the Jags deep. Tress Way, your plane is boarding.
Wait a minute, I think another Cub just struck out.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun