Andy Dalton Will Start Week 17 vs. Giants Because Justin Fields' Ankle is Keeping Him Out of Action

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Andy Dalton Will Start Week 17 vs. Giants Because Justin Fields’ Ankle is Keeping Him Out of Action

Chicago Bears

There are times where it feels like Bears fans simply can’t agree on anything. But I think one thing we can all agree on is that we’ve grown tired of the cat-and-mouse gamesmanship that has found its way into the “will he or won’t he” game the team plays at quarterback.

Don’t get me wrong. I love petty. And I definitely dig the gamesmanship aspect of coaching. However, in a lost season in a game between two teams who are a combined 9-21, it misses the mark and woefully falls flat.

And yet, here we go again. Justin Fields has been limited throughout the week in practice because of a nagging ankle injury. So much so, he won’t start at QB this week:

Grand opening, grand closing.

Andy Dalton, who was the starter in the home opener way back in September, is starting Sunday’s Soldier Field finale against the Giants. That’s because Fields remains iffy with an ankle. Nick Foles serves as QB2, just one week after leading a late-game come-from-behind win. Those are the breaks, I guess.

Bears Head Coach Matt Nagy says that while Fields has been making progress and shown improvement, the team is leaning on the cautious side of things with its rookie quarterback. In a way, that makes sense. Fields has been roughed up this year, taking a ton of sacks, quarterback hits in the pocket, hurries, pressures, and hits as a ball carrier in the open field. IF Nagy is being truthful in prioritizing Fields’ health, then I suppose this is the right move.

Then again, I want Fields to play. He needs in-game reps for development and chemistry building purposes. Since making Fields the full-time starter, playing him is the only thing Bears fans have collectively been caring about. And now that’s back-to-back weeks in which he won’t factor into the game. Not only is that rough on his development, it’s tough on fans who want to be entertained by the slightest bit of hope as this season winds down.

As for the rest of the injury report:

Cornerback Duke Shelley (heel), left tackle Jason Peters (ankle), nose tackle Eddie Goldman (finger), and Akiem Hicks (COVID ramp-up) are all questionable to play. Hicks just came off the Reserve/COVID-19 list hours before the injury report came out, so it’s unsurprising to see his questionable status. But on the other hand, Hicks is a gamer who will give it a go if he is healthy enough. In other words, if Hicks isn’t playing, then you can safely assume it’s a serious issue.

Just two more games. Only two more games. That’s it…



Author: Luis Medina

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