Fairly Grading Mitch Trubisky's Second Year, Scouting the AAF, and Other Bullets

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Fairly Grading Mitch Trubisky’s Second Year, Scouting the AAF, and Other Bullets

Chicago Bears

I took some time on Saturday afternoon and evening to re-charge my batteries after dealing with the stresses of sitting in an auto shop waiting for repairs. Knock on wood, but I believe the issues with my automobile are a thing of the past. Onward.

  • Grading Mitch Trubisky’s second season isn’t easy, but JJ Stankevitz and Laurence Holmes dive into some spot-on analysis of QB1 after two years in the books:

  • Plenty of valid points were made by Stankevitz and Holmes in that 91-second video, which should serve as a reminder that we (as a collective) shouldn’t be rushing to judgment on a player at this stage of his development. I thought Stankevitz nailed it when discussing Trubisky’s playoff performance as a microcosm of his season. There were plenty of “wow” moments where Trubisky impressed with his arm strength and leadership skills in putting the Bears in a position to win. Those moments should build hope for the future. But there were still enough head-scratching throws and decisions that were nothing short of maddening.
  • Knowing that there is still room to grow, Trubisky’s grade being in the middle of the pack isn’t as concerning as one might expect. I don’t want to go as far as to say 2019 is a make-or-break season for Trubisky, but the year to come should allow us get a better grasp on who he is and where he can go.
  • Enjoy this Taylor Gabriel highlight package as he celebrates his 28th birthday:

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bt_LozwnZj9/

  • Gabriel was one of my favorite players to watch last season as he set career highs in catches (67) and receiving yards (688) even though he hauled in just two touchdowns. His addition helped lift the wide receiver group that hadn’t inspired many positive vibes over the last few years. Trubisky posted a 94.1 passer rating when targeting Gabriel last year, and it’s hard not to imagine those two teaming up for bigger plays in 2019 after getting a full season to know each other.
  • In what should be a surprise to no one, the Chicago Bears are monitoring the happenings in the Alliance of American Football. “Our pro scouts are all over that,” Bears GM Ryan Pace told the team’s official website. “We had pro scouts at their training camps that we sent down there. It’s entirely too early to say how many players are going to come out of there (and join NFL teams), but we’re going to be looking closely at it like we do every league.” The upstart football league hopes to find its niche as a developmental league for the NFL and could be a place where fringe players, post-hype sleepers, and everyone in between catches the eye of an NFL talent evaluator such as Pace. Front offices wouldn’t be doing right by themselves or their teams if they weren’t combing through the AAF, but it’s good to have confirmation that the league’s players are on the Bears’ radar.
  • In that vein, Bleacher Report’s Brent Sobleski weighs in with the best AAF players who could make the leap to the NFL next season. Take it for what it’s worth, but none of the league’s kickers make the list. I still believe that a few of the Alliance’s kickers will make their way into NFL training camps and will have tryouts. From there, anything is possible.
  • With how defenses have dominated in the early going of the AAF, I’m starting to believe the bigger likelihood is that defensive linemen, linebackers, and secondary players – the types who can contribute as depth pieces at back end of the roster and on special teams will make their way from the AAF to the NFL. As we have come to learn, you can never have too much depth at the line of scrimmage or in the secondary.
  • Ex-NFLer Nate Jackson points out in a piece posted at Deadspin that the hope provided by the AAF has been there before by leagues that have since faltered. Here’s hoping the AAF has learned from its predecessors and can succeed where others failed.
  • The NFL’s Coach of the Year has basketball thoughts on All-Star Weekend:

  • Some football coaches can get too bogged down in the game to have thoughts and feelings on other sports, so it’s neat to read thoughts from across the aisle. Has Matt Nagy weighed in on where Eloy Jimenez fits in the White Sox lineup yet? And when will he weigh in on the Cubs bullpen? We’re waiting, coach!
  • Ooh! Fanatics has a site-wide sale going on and it features Bears stuff. Who doesn’t like Bears stuff?

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Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.