Justin Fields is the Chicago Bears QB1 and nothing in Chicagoland will ever be the same. I have been waiting my entire life for a franchise quarterback. Much like Morpheus believing he found the ONE in Neo, I believe the Bears have found that quarterback. To say I am elated as a Bears fan isn’t a strong enough word to describe how I’m feeling.
For the past 70 years, the Bears have arguably had the worst run of quarterback play in the NFL. Whether by bad luck, inept management, or both, the Bears have been the definition of futility at the most important position in sports. I believe that has all changed with the Justin Fields pick. Now, is there a chance that Fields is a bust? Of course. The hit rate on quarterbacks is staggeringly low, even for guys taken in the first round. At the very least, what Fields provides the Bears is hope. No matter what happens with Justin Fields, no one can take away the feeling I have for Fields and the Bears right now. There will be another six months of feeling joy; whether that turns out to be warranted or not, we shall see. He is quite honestly the most electric player the Bears have ever had, including Devin Hester.
Fields stands 6’3, 225 pounds, and runs a 4.44 forty. He can throw the ball from sideline to sideline with pop. Fields fits balls into tight windows and can unleash a deadly deep ball. Not only is Fields crazy athletic but he was also the college’s most accurate QB given a clean pocket and the most accurate QB on his second reads. This guy has everything a team would look for in a franchise Quarterback. I believe he can be the most dominant QB of this class—yes, that includes Trevor Lawrence.
The business of finding a great quarterback isn’t easy. There is no rhyme or reason to finding a great quarterback. There is no school that is a QB factory. That is a myth. There is also no school that fails at producing QB’s. Also a myth. The draft and fantasy community know: scout the player, not the helmet. How many great QB’s came out of Texas Tech before Mahomes? How about Clemson before Watson and Lawrence. That is a new phenomenon.
One thing is clear: the majority of NFL QB’s that have had success have come from the first round of the NFL Draft. Of the 32 starters that started in 2020, 21 were first-round picks (65%). The vast majority of NFL talent throughout the history of the NFL have been first-round picks. Can you draft Russ in the 3rd, Dak in the 4th, or Tom Brady in the 6th? Of course, there are exceptions.
However, if you are playing the odds, teams have to keep taking a bite of QB apple in the 1st round. The Bears failed 4 years ago, I’m elated they took another swing. Teams must keep trying to land a franchise QB until they hit. If they miss on Fields, the next regime must go all in 4 years from now. Keep swinging until you hit a home run.
Hitting a Home Run
By the way, a home run doesn’t have to be Patrick Mahomes. That is more of a grand slam. A home run can be guys that keep your team competitive for the next decade. Guys like Matt Ryan and Mathew Stafford. Guys that were never top five in the NFL but kept their teams competitive for a decade-plus. Fields can be this kind of guy.
In fact, Fields has the type of potential to be a top 5 quarterback. I truly believe that. He reminds me of a thicker DeShaun Watson. Will that happen, who knows. What is known is that for a franchise mired in mediocrity at the most important position in sports, they just brought in a guy that threw for 5,373 yards career yards at Ohio State. Fields completed 70% of his passes in his final year. Justin ran through for 63 touchdowns to just 9 interceptions at 9.3 Yards/attempt and all of these are just his passing numbers! The dude also ran 1,133 yards and 19 touchdowns in just 22 games played.
Fields is the total package. The dude has it all. He fits the mould of a modern NFL quarterback that is strong enough to shake defenders and fast enough to run away from linebackers. He had production at a top 4 college school and made the playoffs the last two years. Are there inconsistencies? Of course! He will struggle. It ain’t easy being a great NFL player. Peyton Manning threw 20 interceptions his rookie year. There will be times when Bears fans will struggle watching him, want to criticize him, and won’t feel like their prayers have been answered. But for me, they have. I believe Fields is the guy. He has superstar swagger that says ‘I’m the best player on the field and y’all can’t stop me.’
Bears Have Drafted Wee Little Men
That is something the Bears haven’t had since Jim McMahon and, as a specimen, Justin Fields ain’t Jim McMahon. Therein lies the optimism. Every other Bears QB taken over the last 20 years has come with major question marks. Cade McNown was a punky one-year wonder that was small, un-athletic, inaccurate, and a horrible leader. The Bears thought they were getting Steve Young. Instead, they got left-handed Jake Locher.
Rex Grossman put up all kinds of numbers but he was small, had little hands, and couldn’t manoeuvre well in the pocket. He was also a poor athlete. Mitch Trubisky in 2017 was mostly an unknown. He had some eye-popping throws his last year at UNC but he wasn’t consistent. Does that sound familiar, Bears fans? He ended up with an 8-5 record and was embarrassed by Stanford in a bowl game. Mitch could move, he was a decent athlete, but even Mitch can’t hold a candle to Fields’ athleticism.
More than anything that can be measured, it looks like Fields has a feel for the position. He looks and sounds like a guy that is a star and fully expects himself to be a franchise quarterback. Fields is also extremely intelligent. Before recruiting offers started pouring into the Fields home from every major college football program in the country, there were offers from Harvard, Yale, and Northwestern. Justin Fields also scored the highest score ever recorded on a recall test.
Smart and Dope
There is a famous test given by sports psychologist, Dr. Goldman. He has tested 6,500 athletes and Fields had the highest score of all of them. For reference, Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen scored a 108, Fields scored a 130. This dude is extremely intelligent, he processes the field well, and he doesn’t make mistakes. What I love about a guy like Fields is he has the athletic swagger to hang in the pocket and make late, last-minute throws that can break the back of the defence.
Fields knows at any time, if he sees daylight, he can pick up 12 yards. He was a two-sport athlete that played shortstop. He has excellent feet in the pocket, he hangs knowing he can escape and he looks to hit you deep where his deep ball is excellent. In other words, the total package. For whatever reason, if this pick blows up, I won’t blame pace. The Mitch pick to me was inexcusable. Trading up and being wrong is even worst. The package given up for a guy like Fields is small in comparison.
Give a Little, Get a Lot
The 49ers gave up 2 first-round picks and another 3rd round pick to swap from 9 spots from 12 to 3 to get Trey Lance. The Bears paid a lot as well but not nearly as much for a prospect that I have rated higher than Lance. The Bears gave up a 2022 1st round pick, a 2022 4th round pick and a 2021 fifth-round pick in order to move down 9 spots to land Fields. That was the move at that time. The Lions, Panthers, and Broncos will regret the day they passed on Fields.
The Bears made the move up and now the rest of the league has to regret not paying more attention to a guy that should have been the Jets pick at 2. If COVID-19 never happened, I feel strongly Fields would have been the 2nd overall pick and the Bears would have had no shot at landing him.
‘Fortune favors the bold’ has always been Ryan Pace’s motto. He finally may be correct. This is a move all Bears fans have been waiting on for 70 years. I believe they have found the guy. So now that Justin Fields looks to take over Soldier Field, the Bears have finally had an answer to their prayers. Justin Fields heard the call to become the greatest Quarterback the Bears have ever had. I say he makes it happen.