Grossman Anxious to Fire Some Live Bullets

Bears quarterback Rex Grossman had to endure an awful lot this preaseason. After subpar performances in each of the first three exhibition games, he finally looked like an NFL starter last week in Cleveland. Grossman addressed the media at Halas Hall before Wednesday afternoon's practice, and Bear Report was there to hear what he had to say.

Rex Grossman opened the preseason with a forgettable 3-of-11 performance against the rebuilding 49ers in San Francisco. A week later, he was a very average 7-of-14 at home versus the San Diego Chargers. He was razor sharp in the first half the next week facing the Arizona Cardinals (13-of-18), but he finished the second half 0-for-3 with an interception before getting booed off the field by the Soldier Field crowd.

With his starting job potentially on the line, Grossman got it done last Thursday in Cleveland, putting together a 5-of-8 night for 73 yards and his first touchdown of the exhibition season.

All that is in the rearview mirror now, as the Bears will open the regular season on Sunday afternoon in Green Bay against the Packers. Grossman seems especially ready to finally fire some live bullets.

"Kickoff weekend is a great time," he said on Wednesday at Halas Hall. "Everyone's pumped up and excited for the season to get started. I'm no different than that. And our team's real excited about starting off with a rival, a division opponent. So it's going to be fun."

Grossman still takes a lot of flak for only being on the field for eight NFL games, and rightfully so, but the fourth-year signal-caller is 2-0 in his young career at Lambeau Field.

"We've been able to have some success the last couple of times we went up there, and we'll use that as confidence. But in no way do we feel like since we went up there the last two times we won it's going to be easy. It's a tough atmosphere to play in, and we've got to bring our A-game to pull out a victory. So that's our mindset."

After getting brow-beaten with questions about their inability to put up good numbers in the passing game last year, Grossman and his arsenal know they have something to prove this season.

"I think myself and the receivers are out for a little respect. You don't get any unless you go out there and prove it and go take it. No one's going to give you any respect until you actually earn it, and that's the way it should be. And we feel confident that we're ready to go do that."

Grossman may have a reputation for being a cocky gun-slinger with a football in his hands, but he is remarkably humble when asked about his place in life and how lucky he is to be where he is today.

"It's an unbelievable time in my life really to have this opportunity. To be the starting quarterback for the Chicago Bears and go up to Lambeau Field and play the Packers, it's a special thing. It's a beautiful thing."

The entire starting offense may have played poorly in the first three preseason games, but following this past Thursday night's solid play in Cleveland, Grossman knows he and his offensive mates are more than capable of keeping it going.

"It was nice to get a couple of scoring drives on our first two drives, and (we) definitely want to carry that into next week. The thing about it is, we were close to doing that against the Chargers and the Cardinals, but it didn't happen. We just need to make sure we do all the little details to make sure we finish drives and do well in the red zone and things like that."

Few prognosticators are expecting much from Green Bay this season, which only amplifies the need for Grossman and the Bears to take care of business and start the season 1-0.


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