Justin Fields is going to be the starting quarterback for the Chicago Bears, and the team hopes he'll be the starting quarterback for a long time. There's no question about that. There is a question, however, about when Fields will take over starting duties. In their press conference following the draft Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace didn't put a specific time line on it, nor should they have. Instead they said Fields will start when he's ready, and everyone will know when he's ready. In the meantime, Dan Orlovsky has three things that he believes can speed up Justin Fields’ development and get him on the field faster.
“One: play-action pass full-field progressions,” Orlovsky said in a video posted to Twitter. “Two: Promote the athleticism. If it's not there go make some plays. Three: cut the field in half.”
If that sounds a bit jargony to you, don't worry Orlovsky explains.
“The full-field progression goes one, to two, to three (in receiver reads) no matter the coverage. I want Matt Nagy to take it to the next level. I don't want just full-field progression, I want it to be in play-action pass. Full-field progression matters in play action because the quarterback turns his back to the defense. I don't need my young guy to know whether it's Cover 1, Cover 2, Cover 3 or Cover 4. You don't need to think. Paralysis by analysis at the line of scrimmage, is it Cover 3 or is it Cover 2?
“The other thing, cut the field in half. Literally draw a line down the middle of the field, this side of the field is dead, we are not going to work there. This is not a lack of intellect thing, this just allows young quarterbacks to play fast. What happens when you cut the field in half is you simplify it. And what's great is, Justin fields if you don't like (your options) you can become a runner.”
There are varying schools of thought on when to get your rookie quarterback on the field these days. Some say it's still better for a rookie to spend a year on the bench learning from a veteran and absorbing all that he can absorb before finally taking the field. For what it's worth, that's what Matt Nagy and Andy Reid did with Patrick Mahomes in Kansas City and we all obviously know how that turned out. Others believe set the best time to win a Superbowl is with a stellar Young quarterback still on his rookie deal. that allows GM's to spend big money elsewhere fleshing out their team. In that case, it's best to get the rookie out on the field as soon as possible to open that championship window.
If the bears go that latter route, then there's a good chance we may see some concepts similar to what Orlovsky explained.