While many feel the Chicago Bears’ quarterback competition will be decided at the end of the preseason, it is more likely that both quarterbacks start games in the regular season.
The most anticipated position battle to happen when the Chicago Bears start camp (if they start camp) is at quarterback. Mitchell Trubisky is the incumbent, but he struggled in his three seasons in Chicago.
The man going after Trubisky’s job is Nick Foles. Foles struggled himself throughout his career, but he played in head coach Matt Nagy’s offensive system and feels comfortable running it. As a matter of fact, he was comfortable enough to win a Super Bowl and win the Super Bowl MVP.
The Bears said that when camp begins Trubsiky will take reps with the starters. That doesn’t mean he has a grip on the starting job, though. General manager Ryan Pace said at the end of the season press conference that Trubisky would be the starting quarterback when the 2020 season began and reiterated that when he spoke to the media at the NFL Combine. He then went out and signed Foles.
Some feel that Foles is there to just push Trubisky to get better. Nagy and Pace feel that competition brings out the best in players. Foles, however, is working to win the job and he might have an advantage.
In addition to knowing the system, Foles has experience working with the coaching staff. Besides Nagy, he worked with offensive coordinator Bill Lazor and quarterbacks coach John Defilippo. It seems like things are stacked against Trubisky.
Even if Trubisky ends up losing the battle, still has a shot. Some people feel that the battle ends at the end of the preseason when the starter is named. That likely isn’t the case, however.
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Let’s say Foles wins the battle. He has an injury history, including eight games in 2019. He came back to play three games but then the Jacksonville Jaguars shut him down for the last four games.
That means Trubisky may still have a shot during the season. He needs to stay ready and come through if/when Nagy calls his name again.
The same situation could happen if Trubisky wins the battle. He’ll still have a short leash on him if he starts. The coaching staff already knows about his struggles in this offense. If he starts the season and begins to struggle again, Nagy probably won’t waste much time to pull him. He didn’t have that luxury in previous seasons because the option was Chase Daniel. Daniel is a good option for a game or two, but he isn’t a starting-caliber quarterback. Nagy couldn’t just bench Trubisky for his struggles because the alternative wasn’t better.
Now Nagy has the opportunity to go to the backup should Trubisky show the same traits that hurt him previously.
Last season, there were 12 teams that had one quarterback play all 16 games. Of course, the Bears weren’t one of them. Furthermore, Chicago hasn’t had one quarterback play all 16 games of a season since 2009 (Jay Cutler). That means whoever wins the starting job could very well see himself on the bench for whatever reason. We’ll see both quarterbacks’ mettle and how they come through in the end.