The Chicago Bears saw Mitch Trubisky as the fit to fill the long-standing vacancy of franchise quarterback, but only now we are starting to realize to what extent the Bears were willing to go to get him.
Over at SI.com’s MMQB, Emily Kaplan’s piece on the stealth operation that led the Bears to drafting North Carolina quarterback Mitch Trubisky is a must-read that provides insight and depth into the most surprising move of the draft. It’s a captivating piece of in-depth reporting that takes you behind the scenes and provides background in what the Bears saw in Trubisky and how they were able to keep it under wraps.
Among the highlights was this passage in which a source explains why the Bears coveted Trubisky over the draft’s other top quarterbacks, such as Clemson’s Deshaun Watson and Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes:
“Sources say the Bears preferred Trubisky over Watson or Texas Tech’s Pat Mahomes because they felt his skillset best fits [Bears offensive coordinator Dowell] Loggains’ offense—and because he is poised to get on the field sooner. But that comes with a caveat: ideally, Trubisky won’t take a regular-season snap in 2017—even as pressure mounts in Chicago to win.”
This one buzzes the tower, but could also lead you down a rabbit hole of questions.
The idea of Trubisky getting on the field sooner rather than later contradicts the Bears’ very public plan of sitting Trubisky behind starting quarterback Mike Glennon, and possibly even behind second-stringer Mark Sanchez. Still, as the source noted, even as the Bears like the idea of Trubisky being ready sooner than his draft counterparts, they would still prefer to not to have to go down that road in 2017.
Perhaps head coach John Fox tipped the team’s hand when he recently said he discussed how to handle a face-of-the-franchise type quarterback with former head coach Jeff Fisher. The former leader of the Titans and Rams is an interesting brain to pick in this situation because he most recently dealt with this issue with Jared Goff in Los Angeles. Fisher notably made Goff inactive in an attempt to slow play his development. And this wasn’t the first time Fisher has done this with a young quarterback, as he used a similar method with quarterback Steve McNair, who was allowed to redshirt behind Chris Chandler with the Houston Oilers and eventually when the team moved out to Tennessee.
By late November, for what it’s worth, Goff was the starter, and Fischer was fired the next month.
So, does anyone know what’s going on with the Bears at this point?
Chicago’s decision makers kept their plans to trade for and draft Mitch Trubisky under wraps pretty well. They were able to successfully throw up a ton of smokescreens this offseason, taking multiple visits with Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer, having a private workout at Texas Tech with Mahomes, sending a cavalcade of representatives at Watson’s pro day at Clemson, and sending a limited party to Trubisky’s pro day at North Carolina. You could even argue that signing Mike Glennon in the first place, and the messaging thereafter, was partly a smokescreen.
In short, the Bears’ offseason has been nothing short of a variety of sharp cuts and juke moves with the intent to throw off onlookers and analysts. At this point, every source and rumor is to be taken with a grain of salt, because it seems as if the pulse at Halas Hall is simply hard to find.
Even still, a piece such as Kaplan’s provide the kind of glimpse into the football world that almost make you itch for training camp to start sooner rather than later.
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