2019 Offseason Outlook: Mitch Trubisky and the Improvement That Comes from Within

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2019 Offseason Outlook: Mitch Trubisky and the Improvement That Comes from Within

Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears’ 2018 was equal parts successful and fun, but it’s time to move on. Looking forward, the 2019 season has the potential to be great in its own right. But before we get there, let’s take a position-by-position look at the team right now and what could be in store for the future.

Previous: None

Today: Quarterbacks

WHO’S UNDER CONTRACT?

Mitch Trubisky is under team control at a reasonable rate for the next two years ($7.9 million in 2019, $9.2 million in 2020) before the fifth-year option kicks in and moves the Bears quarterback’s pay into another stratosphere. Because Trubisky’s cap hit is as team friendly as they come right now, the Bears need to capitalize on this window while they can.

Joining Trubisky under contract is backup Chase Daniel, who is in the final season of a two-year pact worth $10 million. Unlike last year when we were counting down the days until Trubisky’s backup was let go, Daniel showed how valuable he was by holding down the fort and splitting the two games he started in Trubisky’s absence.

EXITING FREE AGENTS

Tyler Bray is an unrestricted free agent after spending most of the year on the practice squad, save for the few games he was QB2 behind Daniel. This leaves the Bears with just two quarterbacks on their 90-man roster. It would make sense if the Bears brought Bray back, but the team eventually needs to invest in a young, developmental type to learn behind Trubisky and Daniel.

WHO COULD BE CUT BEFORE THE LEAGUE NEW YEAR BEGINS?

Trubisky isn’t going anywhere and I can’t imagine the Bears cutting Chase Daniel, even if it would free up $2.505 million in salary cap room.

HOW CAN THE BEARS ADDRESS/UPGRADE THE POSITION?

After the Bears hired an offensive-leaning head coach to change the scheme, spent gobs of money on pass-catchers, and used the draft to give a boost to the offensive line and wide receivers room, there isn’t much left for the team to do from a player/personnel acquisition perspective. At this point,  it’s on Trubisky to improve.

The Bears flexed their financial muscle last offseason to surround Trubisky with upgraded pieces around the gridiron. In turn, Trubisky put in a fine season (3,223 yards, 24 TD, 12 INT, 95.4 rating) and went to the Pro Bowl. And while he took an important step as a second-year player, it can’t stop there. Not when the franchise has just two team-friendly years on his rookie scale deal before things get pricey with the fifth-year option and a possible extension.

For Chicago to build on what was the most fun season I’ve had watching football in more than a decade, improvement by Trubisky is a must. That means refined footwork, improved decision-making, and increased accuracy. There were times last season where all three of those things were on display, especially late in the year when Trubisky was able to shed some bad habits from his rookie season that spilled into the early parts of Year 2. But there were also moments when those issues reared their ugly heads.

Sometimes, improvement must come from within. And when it comes to the Bears’ starting quarterback, this is one of those times.

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)


Author: Luis Medina

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