The Justin Fields-Darnell Mooney bromance is one of my favorite things going right now.
Fields is the ultra-talented quarterback with loads of potential and the attitude it takes to end the merry-go-round of mediocrity that the Bears franchise has been mired in for years. Mooney is a rising third-year receiver who has worked his way up from a fifth-round pick and a down-the-depth chart option to Chicago’s clear-cut top receiver. And more than that, Mooney has become Fields’ go-to guy.
We’ve seen the two hit it off on the field. And I’m not above re-sharing these throws and catches over and over again:
FIelds and Mooney building that connection 🎯 #DaBears
— NFL (@NFL) October 3, 2021
FIELDS 2 MOONEY. https://t.co/mlDsJfSksk
— Bleacher Nation Bears (@BN_Bears) October 17, 2021
FIELDS TO MOONEY. #DaBears
— NFL (@NFL) November 9, 2021
But as they enter Year 2 together, it looks like they’re taking it to another level.
In an exclusive interview with Bleacher Report’s Scott Polacek, Fields revealed he and Mooney have been burning the midnight oil in preparation for the season to come while praising Mooney’s work ethic:
“How hard he works,” Fields said when discussing what stands out about Mooney. “He’s already talented; he’s fast and has great hands. On top of that, he works harder than anybody I know other than myself. A couple nights ago, we were in the facility until 12:30 a.m. going through plays and walking through plays for the next day at practice.”
On the one hand, I like to promote a healthy work-life balance. But on the other hand, I’m also cognizant that hard work pays off. As do late nights at the office. Even still … take it easy, fellas. Mandatory minicamps are a month away, training camp won’t pop off until July, preseason games don’t kickoff until August, and games of consequence don’t begin until September. There will be plenty of time to put in an over-the-top amount of work.
Then again, I find it admirable that Fields and Mooney are going extra lengths to cook up something special.
After all, as Peanut Tillman said in his inspirational speech to the Bears’ rookies, young players knowing the playbook is a great way to earn respect from veteran teammates. Moreover, this is a duo learning a new offensive scheme, system, and playbook. They could have as many as five new starters alongside them on the offensive side of the ball. In other words, Fields and Mooney are the ones who should be going the extra mile. Because if they are going to be leaders for this offense (and this franchise) moving forward, then putting in late-night work is a solid way to lead by example.
Sure, a little bit of work after midnight isn’t necessarily going to make the Bears a 10-win team overnight. But building good habits, routines, and work ethic now could trickle down to others over time. At minimum, it is good to see that the offense’s two most talented players are also the hardest workers.