The Chicago Bears are totally here to get you hyped for Mitch Trubisky’s big debut:
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) October 9, 2017
- When it comes to rookie performances, I tend to default to a place that tempers expectations. However, John “Moon” Mullin of NBC Sports Chicago believes there are good reasons for expectations to be high regarding Mitch Trubisky’s immediate future. Mullin offers up several examples of quarterbacks who have provided a positive net impact upon their arrival under center. The quarterback youth movement continues to yield surprising play from highly touted youngsters, whether it’s Jared Goff and Carson Wentz leading their teams to 3-1 starts in Year 2, Jameis Winston nearly lifting his team into the playoffs with a 9-7 record after going 6-10 as a rookie, or any number of recent success stories like Dak Prescott, Teddy Bridgewater, and Andrew Luck. Trubisky’s situation is much different than any of the aforementioned quarterbacks, but that doesn’t mean we can’t dream of bigger things. After all, one pundit believes Trubisky can get the Bears to .500 by the time the team’s bye week rolls around.
- For what it’s worth, ESPN’s Jon Gruden says bring on the hype and expectations, telling Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune: “Bring it on, have some fun, get excited. This young kid showed you what he is capable of doing in the preseason. He’s a great kid. Get behind your man.” We’re all in, Jon. All. In.
- It wasn’t that long ago when Kyle Long was in Trubisky’s shoes as a rookie preparing for his first start. Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune catches up with Long, who says Trubisky is further along in his development process than he was when he was making the transition from being an offensive lineman at Oregon. If you’ll recall, Long started just six games as an offensive lineman for the Ducks in 2012, but opened enough eyes to become the 20th overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. Long’s selection has turned out to be the best of Phil Emery’s tenure, as it still pays dividends today.
- Heck, it wasn’t that long ago when Mark Sanchez was in Trubisky’s shoes as a rookie quarterback leading a quarterback-starved franchise in a major media market. Sanchez knows the ins-and-outs of what it’s like to be in this position, telling WGN Radio’s Adam Hoge in a radio interview that external narratives will be present and prevalent, but they shouldn’t get to the Bears rookie. Here’s hoping they don’t.
- Staying at WGN Radio for a moment, where Adam Hoge brings up an interesting point of view. Hoge writes if the Bears assessment of Trubisky being the team’s quarterback-of-the-future is spot on, then his readiness for his first pro game won’t be a big deal. There is an underlying belief the Bears have rushed Trubisky into action. But if he is as good as the Bears believe he is (and they must believe he will be good, otherwise, what’s the point of trading a small bounty to move up one spot to take him?) then he’ll prove to be ready when winning time comes because he’ll grow into his role as a leader and quarterback.
- While Tarik Cohen has only four games of experience, he is in a surprisingly good position to share some words of wisdom with Trubisky as he makes his debut. “I told him I don’t feel like he needs to be a superhero,” Cohen tells Patrick Finley of the Chicago Sun-Times. “We’re in this together as a team, and we’re going to be supporting.” Cohen had one of the most memorable debuts by a Bears player in franchise history when he opened eyes with his shredding of the Atlanta Falcons defense in Week 1. No one is asking Trubisky to re-write the record books with one start, but it would be nice to see multiple rookies on the same offense thriving at the same time.
- How will the Vikings defend Trubisky is still yet to be seen, but Kevin Fishbain checks in with Andrew Krammer of the Star-Tribune for some insight on Minnesota’s defensive game plan. Minnesota faced two rookie quarterbacks last year, with varying results. The Vikings blitzed Carson Wentz at a 26.7 percent clip and the Eagles rookie threw two interceptions, completed just 57 percent of his passes, and posted a 52.4 rating. On the other hand, Dak Prescott owned a 108.3 rating and completed 67 percent of his throws while facing a blitz on just 19.7 percent of his drop backs. Prescott is more mobile than Wentz, so I’ll be intrigued to see if they send more blitzers at Trubisky in an attempt to rush him into some mistakes.