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Matt Nagy is Taking a Different Path to Mitch Trubisky’s Development

Analysis and Commentary

In his Wednesday meeting with the media after the second day of the Chicago Bears’ three-day minicamp, Nagy explained what he wanted to see from quarterback Mitch Trubisky by offering up what he didn’t want to see.

“What I don’t want him to do is I don’t want him to be thinking too much, at all,” Nagy said on Wednesday. Now that we’ve taken care of that, what does the coach want to see from his quarterback right now?

“Go out and just let the thing rip. Just let it go, make the throws,” Nagy explained. “We call it card throws. If you’re in practice, you’re a scout team quarterback, and you just throw and you really don’t care, you’re just throwing it on time – anticipation throws – that’s what I want from him right now is to do that.”

This is something Trubisky probably would have experienced as a rookie had his head coach and offensive coordinator been operating on the same wavelength. The concept of airing it out seemed to fly in the face of what the Bears’ offensive philosophy was in 2017 under former head coach John Fox.

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Trubisky wasn’t asked to throw often. And when he was allowed to “let the thing rip” – as Nagy so eloquently put it – the throws were often short and safe.

John Fox’s style wasn’t conducive to that kind of learning experience, so let’s circle back to December 7, 2017, when we noted what looks like a clearly dissenting opinion regarding Trubisky’s development offered up by offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains:

“Everything we’re trying to do is win one game at a time, but there is a big picture thought process from myself and the offensive staff,” Loggains explained during his Wednesday meeting with the media at Halas Hall, which you can view in its full-blown glory here. “We understand this kid needs to develop. There are some situations he needs to go through, fail at, and learn from.”

“This kid” Loggains referred to was Trubisky, the rookie quarterback who was going through some stuff at the time. And the situations he needed to “go through, fail at, and learn from” weren’t often available to him by design. Remember how handcuff Trubisky looked when game plans limited the volume of throws he was allowed to make? How was he supposed to develop a risk calculus for his throws if he wasn’t allowed to make the necessary throws.

One of the reasons the Bears hired an offensive-minded head coach was so that he and the quarterback could march to the beat of the same drum rather than work on divergent paths. So we shouldn’t expect conflicting philosophies from the coaching staff regarding how the quarterback should be developing.

In the end, mistakes from young quarterbacks are inevitable. How one bounces back from miscues will say a lot about how the future goes in Chicago. No one can foresee what’s beyond the horizon, but it sounds like Nagy is going to face challenges differently than the coach who came before him.


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Luis Medina

Luis is the Lead Writer at The Ten-Yard Line, and you can find him on Twitter at @lcm1986.