Matt Nagy says the pieces are in place, which means it will soon be time for Mitch Trubisky to turn it loose.
Over at FanRag Sports, Kyle Crabbs circles three top-10 picks who need to make a big next step in their second season. Trubisky making the list is only natural. He was the first quarterback off the board in the 2017 NFL Draft, and his overall numbers weren’t all that great. But with a new coach and some talented pass-catchers on the outside, he is in prime position to take a leap in production like Carson Wentz and Jared Goff before him.
How Trubisky goes about making the necessary improvements internally is still to be seen, but just know that we’ll soon be reading (and writing) a lot about how Trubisky can go about getting better now that he has some quality help.
- Roquan Smith said all the right things early in his Bears career, specifically when it comes to the team’s history of stud inside linebackers. It’s something Brian Urlacher is quite familiar with, telling the Dan McNeil and Danny Parkins Show the same thing happened to him as a rookie. “All you can do is try to embrace the history of the tradition of middle linebackers,” Urlacher recalled. “You got to be you, though, because we’re all different players.”
- Solid advice from the Hall of Fame linebacker, who hopes Smith isn’t thinking about being the next Urlacher. You can check out the entire interview here:
- Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times takes a stab at sizing up and defining the expectations of the Bears’ highly acclaimed draft class as Matt Nagy’s first rookie minicamp is underway. Six of the Bears’ seven draft picks have signed, and the team added 15 undrafted free agents who are trying to make a statement with their play. The Bears didn’t draft a quarterback and were unable to scoop one up as an undrafted free agent, but former Georgia standout Aaron Murray will take his chance during a weekend tryout. Murray was drafted by Nagy’s Chiefs in 2014.
- Chicago Tribune columnist David Haugh catches up with former Bears stud running back Thomas Jones, who shared some quality advice for Bears rookies. Jones knows exactly what the plight of a rookie looks like from both points of view. Most notably, his time as the wily vet out-performing the brazen rookie when he out-classed top-5 pick Cedric Benson gives him quite the unique perspective. Anything Jones says should be written down and noted by Bears rookies.
- GM Ryan Pace did a ton of heavy lifting in the offseason, and now it’s time for Nagy to cook up his magic with the pieces that are currently in place, writes JJ Stankevitz of NBC Sports Chicago. Pace received a contract extension on the day he announced John Fox’s firing, and while that ruffled some feathers, an aggressive GM with a new deal went to work on fixing a team that won just 14 games in his first three years in charge. Perhaps having the general manager and the head coach pulling from the same side of the rope will help matters.
- This isn’t to say a GM’s job is ever done. While the Bears look to be improved from where it was last year, there is always room for more help. Over at 247Sports, Matt Eurich pitches the idea of the Bears pursuing defensive lineman Rakeem Nunez-Roches as someone who could bring depth to a position group that would probably welcome some aid. Nagy should be familiar with Nunez-Roches, who was a sixth-round pick (217th overall) by Kansas City in 2015.
- If stats could feel things, I think PFF’s would absolutely admire everything about Bears safety Adrian Amos:
The best safeties in the NFL in 2017! pic.twitter.com/jUsNmTM6QE
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) May 10, 2018
- Victor Cruz isn’t ready to call it a career just yet, but he has set a deadline in which he will have to accept that his playing career is over. “Once that deadline comes, if nothing has happened, I’ll hang them up,” Cruz said, via ESPN’s Jordan Raanan. “Probably around training camp time and then we’ll probably go from there.” Cruz spent time with the Bears last summer and caught Mitch Trubisky’s first (preseason) touchdown pass, but didn’t make the Week 1 roster. If Cruz doesn’t play again, he’ll have an easy transition into the booth as an analyst. He pretty much called Trubisky taking over for Mike Glennon weeks before it happened.
- Khaseem Greene’s playing career with the Bears was short-lived, playing 25 games in two seasons before being waived in May 2015. Greene, 29, is filing a lawsuit in which he alleges authorities in New Jersey fabricated evidence that linked him to a gun used in a shooting. You can check out a PDF here.