One NFL Analyst Projects a HUGE Year for Justin Fields
In taking a shot at NFC win-total projections, NFL Network analytics expert Cynthia Frelund also shared some information that the computers were spitting out for Chicago’s QB1.
And frankly, I think the future is looking pretty good for Bears quarterback Justin Fields:
“Justin Fields tops 500 rushing yards in 55.2 percent of simulations and passes for more than 3,500 yards in 55.1 percent of simulations.”
I’m no mathmagician, but Frelund’s algorithm spitting out Fields putting up 3,500+ passing yards and 500+ rushing yards in more than 55 percent of simulations is news that should be welcome with open arms.
I’ve spent way too much time the last few days digging into all sorts of numbers, forecasts, projections, and statistical analysis while piecing together fantasy football drafts the last two days. At this point, I’m almost math’d out. I say “almost” because those numbers made me turn my head. Let’s discuss.
In a vacuum, Fields reaching (and surpassing) 3,500 passing yards and 500 rushing yards would be remarkable. After an offseason in which his offensive line and receivers were dragged, Fields putting up those numbers would rock my socks. Don’t get me wrong. I realize they don’t play football in a vacuum. But this projection gives me hope. And, at minimum, provides a baseline for what Fields can do. Remember, projections aren’t predictions. And oftentimes, projection modules are conservative by nature. In other words, there are simulations that would have Fields outperforming those numbers. So, keep that in mind if those numbers don’t do anything for you.
Let’s give it some perspective: Only three quarterbacks last year ran for more than 500 yards last season. Just two (Jalen Hurts, Josh Allen) threw for more than 3,000 yards. And only Allen (4,407) was able to eclipse the 3,500-yard barrier. Had Lamar Jackson been healthy for a full 17-game season, he likely would’ve joined the party. In other words, Fields reaching the 3,500-yard passing and 500 rushing landmarks as a second-year player would put him in darn good company.
As for the rest of Ireland’s projections, they don’t necessarily paint a pretty picture for the Bears as a whole. A ceiling of 7.0 wins, 4.2-win floor, and 5.9-win projection isn’t what fans are looking for this time of year. With that being said, it’s hard to imagine the Bears being worse than the 6-win team they were last year. Especially after an offseason of widespread change. But I’m looking forward to seeing if this Matt Eberflus-led bunch can beat some projections. If they can, then maybe it’ll teach those soulless number-generating algorithms not to underestimate the Monsters of the Midway.