When a Hall of Fame quarterback gives his opinion on the performance of Mitch Trubisky, you better sit up and listen. And that's why Troy Aikman's thoughts about the Bears' third-year passer mean so much for a team that's fighting for its playoff life in December.
“This is impressive," Aikman said of Trubisky during Chicago's Week 14 game against the Cowboys. "This is arguably his shining moment of his young career. It’s been fun to watch. And that’s why Matt Nagy was hired, let’s be honest. He was hired to turn him into a franchise quarterback for a team that has invested so much in the quarterback.”
Trubisky has been steadily improving over the last month or so of the season, but he's now stacked two franchise-quarterback-level games together for the first time all year. In Week 13 against the Lions, Trubisky threw for 338 yards and three touchdowns and was named FedEx Air Player of the Week as a result. Most Bears fans assumed that would be his 2019 watermark, but just one week later, he's raised the bar.
“Knowing the scrutiny that Mitch Trubisky has been under, I’ve sure enjoyed watching him," Aikman said. "He’s just grown right in front of our eyes in the last couple of weeks.”
The game is slowing down for Trubisky. He's playing with confidence and throwing the ball like the strong-armed, accurate passer his pre-draft scouting report said he was. His passer rating of 115.5 against the Cowboys tells only part of the story of his dominance; he's been tearing up Dallas as a runner too. Trubisky had 63 rushing yards on 10 attempts.
It's still too early to say Trubisky has officially arrived as Chicago's franchise quarterback. But we're getting there. And considering how murky Trubisky's future seemed just a month or so ago, it's a development that should spark a ton of confidence in this team moving forward.
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Chicago Bears QB Mitch Trubisky is entering the most important offseason of his NFL career. Naturally, he needs to be 100% healthy in order to hold off competition that's expected to be added by GM Ryan Pace via free agency or the NFL draft.
In order to get there, Trubisky underwent offseason surgery to repair the torn labrum in his left shoulder.
Trubisky was originally injured in Week 4's win over the Vikings.
The good news is the surgery was on his non-throwing shoulder. And while it'll be a few months before he's back to full strength, it's not nearly as severe as it would've been had it been his right side.
Trubisky's 2019 regular season was defined by regression. He took a step back in every major category, including completion percentage, yards and touchdowns. He didn't run nearly as much either, as his rushing totals dipped from 421 yards in 2018 to just 193 last year.
The Bears are one of the first teams connected to almost every big-name free-agent quarterback likely to hit the open market, and they've also been mentioned as a club that could potentially trade back into the first round if a quality quarterback prospect begins to slip in the 2020 NFL draft. Needless to say, the pressure's on No. 10.
We haven't seen enough from a healthy Trubisky to consider him a starting-quality player at this point, so a less-than-full-strength version of the 2017 second overall pick would've all but doomed his chances at holding onto the starting job this summer.
For today's podcast for Super Bowl week in Miami, host Laurence Holmes has two separate discussions with two great guests. Kevin Clark and Robert Mays of the Ringer join the podcast to discuss why the Chiefs and Niners are in the Super Bowl and what the Bears are missing that's holding them back from a Super Bowl.
Part 1 with Kevin Clark
(2:19) - All the NFL players wanted to talk about Kobe Bryant at Media Night
(5:58) - What is the Ringer?
(7:24) - There is a lot that can be learned from Kyle Shanahan
(11:16) - What is Matt Nagy doing wrong with the Bears
(13:36) - What should the Bears do with Mitch Trubisky?
Part 2 with Robert Mays
(20:21) - Interview starts with Mays/ innovation of offense with Reid and Shanahan
(22:31) - Shanahan had the coolest offense Mays has ever seen
(25:16) - Can Matt Nagy be Shanahan?
(26:55) - What are the Bears options at QB?
Listen here or in the embedded player below.
Under Center Podcast