We just finished hashing through the various paths available to the Chicago Bears if they want to reacquire quarterback Kyle Orton. In short, the Bears probably don't need to place a waiver claim to complete the process.
There is one other possibility, one that happens often in other sports but rarely in the NFL. Would a team claim Orton for competitive purposes, solely to prevent his return to Chicago? And if so, could that team be the Detroit Lions?
A number of you have asked that, and ESPN analyst Andrew Brandt broached the topic Wednesday morning via Twitter.
The Lions and Bears have matching 7-3 records and are competing for a playoff spot. Detroit is set at quarterback with Matthew Stafford, Shaun Hill and Drew Stanton. But surely they know how much trouble the Bears would be in if new starter Caleb Hanie were sidelined before Jay Cutler can return from surgery on his right thumb.
The gambit would cost the Lions $2.6 million in cash, and they would have to do some roster shuffling to fit Orton underneath their salary cap. Would you spend that much money, in the process adding a player who probably wouldn't appreciate being used as a competitive tool, to prevent a competitor from improving? Vote in the poll accompanying this post and/or let me in the comments section below.