The Bears have signed quarterback Jimmy Clausen, quarterback coach Steve Clarkson announced on Twitter. Clausen, 26, hasn’t played in an NFL regular-season game since his rookie year in 2010.
Last September, Clausen underwent shoulder surgery and he says that he’s feeling healthy and ready to contribute. “I’m still really young,” Clausen told Tom Pelissero of USA Today. “I’m going into my fifth year in the league. I feel great. This is probably right now the healthiest I’ve been since my junior year in college, to be honest with you.”
Clausen indicated that he wanted an opportunity to be someone’s No. 2 quarterback to help set him up for a starting job down the line, and that’s exactly what Chicago could provide for him. The QB spoke with Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter links) and said that he would compete to be Jay Cutler’s first understudy but stopped short of any boastful projections.
The Bears already have three backup QBs in camp in Jordan Palmer, late draft pick David Fales, and practice squad holdover Jerrod Johnson. The signing of Johnson could indicate some level of dissatisfaction with the trio.
Since playing in 13 games (10 starts) in his rookie season with the Panthers, the former Notre Dame standout and longtime QB prodigy has barely seen the field. The Bears will have to cut someone in order to create space for Clausen but no such move has been announced yet.
Zach Links contributed to this post.