Bears

Which player should Bears fans be most excited to watch in 2020 preseason?

Which player should Bears fans be most excited to watch in 2020 preseason?

The NFL preseason is an odd four weeks of football. The games don't count, and the players who usually see most of the playing time end up failing to make the final roster. But that doesn't mean Bears fans shouldn't be excited for the first live football since last year's disappointing playoff-less season.

The 2020 preseason is a big question mark right now. There's a chance it will be cut to just two games because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The NFL hasn't made any official announcement yet, but it would be pretty foolish to expose players and fans to unnecessary risk for games that don't count. 

Even if the preseason is just two games, Bears fans will keep a close eye on a few newcomers who are expected to make significant contributions in 2020. Edge rusher Robert Quinn and tight ends Jimmy Graham and Cole Kmet immediately come to mind, but it's quarterback Nick Foles who was dubbed the player fans should be most excited to watch this summer.

The Chicago Bears traded for quarterback Nick Foles this offseason to either push or replace 2017 first-round pick Mitchell Trubisky. While Trubisky has shown flashes of greatness in his three seasons, he has yet to become a franchise quarterback.

Foles has also failed to do that and has struggled away from the Philadelphia Eagles. However, he was a Pro Bowler and Super Bowl MVP in Philadelphia, and the possibility that he can recapture that magic remains—which is why the Jacksonville Jaguars signed him last offseason.

Of course, there's no telling which version of Foles the Bears are getting or whether he can be a better option than Trubisky. Chicago hopes to gain a little clarity during the preseason.

The Bears' quarterback competition will be all that matters over the next few months. We know the defense is good. We know the offensive line has some issues that need improvement, and we know the running game will begin and end with David Montgomery. Allen Robinson will be the alpha pass-catcher.

The only thing we don't know is who will line up behind center in Week 1. So, yeah, Foles will be 'that guy' this preseason. Fans want to know if he'll be 'that guy' who can lead this Bears team, one that features an obvious playoff defense and enough playmakers to be competent on offense, to another NFC North championship.

The excitement Bears fans will have for Foles is kind of like that excitement you feel in a haunted house. Maybe it isn't exciting at all. It might be more accurate to say Bears fans are fearful of the 2020 preseason. There's a chance it could reveal the team has two quarterbacks who aren't capable of winning games in the NFL. And if that happens? It'll be a long time before this team is in the Super Bowl conversation again.

Under Center Podcast: Warren Sharp describes what 2020 Bears will look like

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USA TODAY

Under Center Podcast: Warren Sharp describes what 2020 Bears will look like

As they prepare for the season, it's time to start looking in depth at what the Bears could look like in 2020.

JJ Stankevitz and Cam Ellis are joined by one of the smartest minds in football media, Warren Sharp of Sharp Football Analysis, to discuss and predict what the Bears look like in 2020. The group discusses the QB competition, will the Bears defense improve or regress, and what should Matt Nagy do in terms of his scheme this year.

(2:40) - Nick Foles should be the starter in 2020

(7:45) - Matt Nagy needs to be more predictable in play calling

(15:30) - Have the Bears used and embraced analytics

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest Bears news and analysis.

(22:10) - How easy is the Bears schedule and what will be their record at the end of the season?

(31:00) - Why you should watch the Bears in 2020

Listen here or below.

Under Center Podcast

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Brett Favre says Nick Foles should start for the Bears

Brett Favre says Nick Foles should start for the Bears

Former Green Bay Packers quarterback and Chicago Bears nemesis, Brett Favre, offered his opinion on the Bears' quarterback competition during a recent appearance on Da Windy City Podcast, and suggested Nick Foles is the better option to line up behind center for Chicago in 2020.

His logic is based on an old-school approach to the game: wins.

"I look at it this way: How will Nick Foles play in Chicago? I don't know," Favre said. "I just base it off how they both have performed when they have been given the opportunity, and Nick Foles, I think, has performed better. 

"If you just based it off how they've performed in real game situations, obviously, Nick Foles won a Super Bowl. And played lights out. Just based off of that, Nick Foles is the better player."

Talk about a straightforward opinion. And it's one the Bears' brass might agree with, too. They wanted Foles so much that they traded for him in an offseason that included several quality free agents who wouldn't have cost the team a draft pick to acquire. That said, none of them had a Super Bowl win on their resume (sans Tom Brady) either.

How much stock should Bears fans put into Favre's opinion? It depends. If you're a believer in 'game recognizing game,' then Favre's opinion on Chicago's quarterback competition is as valid as any.

With no preseason games coming this summer, Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace will have less tape to use in their decision-making process. As a result, they'll be forced to rely on a blend of  training camp performances and existing tape from the last couple of seasons. 

If they go back as far as 2017, it'll be hard imagining a scenario where Foles doesn't come away the victor.