Rookie quarterback Mitch Trubisky is moving up in the world … well, at least moving up on the Chicago Bears depth chart.
Mark Sanchez’s recently-suffered knee injury will keep him out until July, and Trubisky becomes the beneficiary, having already taken over second-string quarterback duties for the time being. Hopefully, the additional reps taken by the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft will turn out to be positive strides in his long-term development.
Trubisky weighed in on this and other topics during his meeting with the assembled media at Halas Hall on Tuesday:
- Over at the Chicago Sun-Times, Adam Jahns offers up four things to takeaway from Trubisky’s meeting with the media, providing a mix of insights. Among them, some details on Trubisky’s developmental process – including a nugget that the Bears are changing their rookie signal caller’s footwork. It was only a matter of time until this happened, because running plays out from under center in the pros requires a different set of footwork than performing out of the pistol and shotgun in college. Trubisky says he sometimes sees himself falling into old habits, which he chalks up to muscle memory from his time at North Carolina, but is working on getting those particular kinks out.
- And because of Sanchez’s injury, Trubisky will get plenty of time to work things out. Jahns writes that Trubisky will be the full-time No. 2 quarterback over the next five full days of OTAs, and during next week’s three-day mini-camp.
- As for being the only Bears draft pick who hasn’t signed his contract, Trubisky doesn’t seem concerned. “Oh, yeah, that’s not really for me to worry about,” Trubisky told the Sun-Times. “I’m going to be out here at practice every day. My agent and the Bears’ organization [are] going to handle that. But I’m not really sure how that stuff works. I’m here to play football; I’m not worried about contracts.”
- With Trubisky’s focus on football, one of the things he will work on is getting acclimated to Dowell Loggains’ offense. The leap from running a college offense to being in charge of one in the pros is no small task, but it seems as if Trubisky is easing his way in well. Trubisky tells Bob LeGere of The Daily Herald says the progression is going well, in part, because there are similarities to what he was running at UNC. “You’ve got to be good with your feet, you’ve got to be good with your eyes, you’ve got to go through your progressions, and you’ve got to be decisive,” Trubisky said. “Coming from the offense I did at North Carolina has helped me a lot, but I’ve still got a long ways to go.”
- I was curious about how plays offensive snaps were split by the Bears in 2016. According to Pro Football Reference, the Bears ran 967 total plays last year – 607 plays out of shotgun, and 360 under center. That adds up to 62.8 percent of plays coming in shotgun formation, and only 37.2 percent with the quarterback lined up under center.
- While the Bears continue to tweak Trubisky’s footwork to allow him to get more comfortable under center, one change the team isn’t making is with his throwing motion. Trubisky dropped the “it is what it is” cliche with ESPN Chicago’s Jeff Dickerson, saying: “[But] they’re not really messing with [my throwing motion]. It’s more of my footwork. My throwing motion is what it is. I got a quick release and I could throw the ball accurately as long as I bring my feet with me. So that’s what coach says: Do the footwork, bring your feet with you, get through your progression and use your eyes well. So as long as my shoulders are level and I pull through with my hips, the ball should be where it’s supposed to go.”
- Trubisky threw only six interceptions last season, and frankly, a minuscule 1.3 percent interception rate would be a welcome sight to an offense that can’t afford to turn the ball over.
- The hard work being put in by Trubisky is starting to pay off, writes Larry Mayer of ChicagoBears.com. And of all the adjustments Trubisky has made early in his new life as a NFL quarterback, handling his new position as a professional is a unique challenge. While he says it wasn’t a surprise, Trubisky has quickly come to the realization of how much work is put into being a quarterback at the NFL level, which includes studying at all hours. “It’s all about blocking out distractions and how good you want to be,” Trubisky explained. “It’s all about how much time you want to put in. For me it’s been a huge focus; block out everything else and just come here and do my job. It’s been nice the only thing I have to worry about is football, so it’s been a lot of fun.”