After a disappointing 8-8 season in 2019, the Chicago Bears have their fair share of work to do in order to get back to where they were in 2018, let alone where they want to be moving forward.
At the top of the to-do list sits quarterback Mitch Trubisky – as in: getting the starting quarterback fixed for the final year of his rookie deal. Trubisky is three years into his pro career and is still viewed as something of an enigma. In moments, he flashes plus athleticism, a strong arm, and easy-to-dream-on off-the-cuff play-making ability. But in other moments, his decision-making is highly questionable, mechanics are out of whack, and throws are nowhere near as accurate as where they need to be. So in a sense, the only consistency in Trubisky’s game is inconsistency.
Heck, GM Ryan Pace said as much in his end-of-season press conference.
“The first thing that comes to mind for me is just consistency,” Pace said in late December. “You see moments, you see games, but for him, stringing together better consistency. You have peaks and valleys, we just need to flatten them out.”
Trubisky’s inconsistencies have put the Bears at a crossroad with their quarterback. Down one path, he’s expected to be the starter heading into 2020, but down the other, competition looms on the horizon.
At least Head Coach Matt Nagy has an idea of what Trubisky needs to do this offseason to get it together, laying out his goals for his starting quarterback to reach this offseason:
Number one on Nagy’s checklist for Trubisky? “I want him to be a master at understanding coverages.”
Says he’s not far but they need to hammer it through this offseason the amount of different looks he will get from defenses. “He’s right there just matter of doing it.”@WGNNews
— Josh Frydman (@Josh_Frydman) December 31, 2019
The good news is that Nagy has an inkling as to what Trubisky needs to conquer in order to get to where his production meets his talent. Knowledge is power. And if you know the thing you need to beat in order to become what you want to be, it makes the fight easier.
But where there is good news, there is bad. And the bad feels more troubling than the good is encouraging.
The bad news is that Trubisky is 42 starts (playoff game included) into his life as an NFL quarterback and still hasn’t mastered understanding coverages? That feels like an important thing a quarterback should be able to do on a basic level. Because at this level, everyone has arm talent and athleticism to play quarterback. But what separates the tiers of quarterbacks is their understanding of what defenses are trying to do and how they are trying to trick quarterbacks, then applying their knowledge to beat whatever the defense throws their way. Again, at least the coach knows what the quarterback needs to do to get it going in the right direction.
So, there we have it. In order for Trubisky to be at his best in 2020, he’ll need to read defenses better and play with more consistency. Two things that probably should have been taken into consideration long before we got to this point.