Mitch Trubisky

Kyle Long says Mitch Trubisky 'makes everything look easy'

Kyle Long says Mitch Trubisky 'makes everything look easy'

Kyle Long may be the leader of the Chicago Bears offensive line, but the distinction of who the leader in the locker room is belongs to quarterback Mitch Trubisky.

"Without a shadow of a doubt, our guy number 10 is our leader and that's echoed throughout our locker room," Long said in an interview with SiriusXM's NFL Radio on Thursday. "He's not afraid to call a guy like myself out, if the effort is lacking. He just makes everything look easy."

Learning an entirely new -- and complex -- offense in Year 2 won't exactly be easy for Trubisky and the Bears offense, but Long's confidence in his quarterback is certainly encouraging. 

Trubisky experienced the typical roller coaster ride of a rookie season in 2017 when he threw for 2,193 yards with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. Despite his underwhelming production, teammates and coach Matt Nagy have expressed faith in Trubisky entering 2018, even if the creators of 'Madden 19' view him as the 37th-best quarterback in the NFL.

Long is doing his part to bang the Trubisky drum as training camp approaches. The rest will be up to the young gunslinger to make sure the offseason investment in him pays off with wins this fall.

Mitch Trubisky would be Jets' fourth-string QB, according to 'Madden 19'

Mitch Trubisky would be Jets' fourth-string QB, according to 'Madden 19'

Chicago Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky has a lot to prove before he can be branded as one of the NFL's best young quarterbacks. His rookie season showed a massive amount of promise, but he didn't have the "wow" moment that's required to get the non-Bears fan excited.

Nowhere is this more apparent than the player ratings issued by the developers of Madden 19, the epic video game franchise that helps bridge the gap between the late-summer months and the start of the NFL's regular season.

Trubisky's player rating was revealed Tuesday and it was shockingly low, to say the least. His 74 overall rating ranked 37th among quarterbacks in the game.

All three Jets quarterbacks -- Teddy Bridgewater, Sam Darnold and Josh McCown -- have higher player ratings.

Say what?!?!

NFL teams generally carry three quarterbacks on the final roster, which suggests -- according to Madden 19 -- that Trubisky wouldn't make the cut in New York. Let that simmer in your brain for a second.

Other quarterbacks who received a higher rating than Trubisky include Jacoby Brissett (Colts), Josh Rosen (Cardinals) and Sam Bradford (Cardinals).

And get ready for this: Trubisky's rating is only two points higher than Mike Glennon. Yes, that Mike Glennon.

Trubisky falls within the backup quarterback range on Madden 19's quarterback board. His peers include Ryan Fitzpatrick (Buccaneers), Deshone Kizer (Packers), Brock Osweiler (Dolphins) and Kyle Lauletta (Giants).

Talk about low expectations for a player who entered the league as the second overall pick just one year ago.

Players take notice of their Madden ratings. Just ask Akiem Hicks and Anthony Miller. Whether Trubisky considers his 74 grade as another layer of disrespect to fuel a successful 2018 campaign is not yet known, but for Bears fans excited about getting their hands on this year's copy of the game, get ready for a bumpy offensive ride.

For the complete Madden 19 quarterback ratings, click here.

Three questions for Bears QBs: Just how good can Mitch Trubisky be?

Three questions for Bears QBs: Just how good can Mitch Trubisky be?

Pre-camp depth chart

1. Mitch Trubisky
2. Chase Daniel
3. Tyler Bray

1. How much of Matt Nagy’s offense can Trubisky handle?

Matt Nagy, Mark Helfrich and Dave Ragone threw a lot at Trubisky during OTAs and minicamp, turning the practice fields at Halas Hall into a sort of offensive test kitchen. The goal was to not only challenge Trubisky’s ability to understand all that information, but to see what worked and what didn’t for the second-year quarterback. That led to some hit-or-miss results during team activities, though a positive sign was how fast the offense played during June’s veteran minicamp when Nagy pared things back and focused less on installation.

Backup Chase Daniel estimated the Bears had installed 10 times the plays Kansas City did back in 2013, when Andy Reid, Doug Pederson and Nagy developed the first iteration of this offense. And by all accounts, Trubisky handled the learning process well — teammates complimented his ability to spit out lengthy play calls in the huddle, and when he got the verbiage wrong, he didn’t get frustrated.

Training camp will be another difficult test for Trubisky in terms of installation and learning, but that’s how the Bears want it. So you might see Trubisky make some mistakes in Bourbonnais, especially with the defense entering its fourth year running Vic Fangio’s scheme. But the most important thing for Trubisky isn’t eliminating those mistakes — it’s learning from them and not making them again.

“We have to set a foundation, we have to set something that all guys are comfortable with, and we’re going to rep the crap out of all those plays, all those protections, everything like that because if we don’t, we’ll never really have a solid foundation to build off,” Daniel said. “When we get into Week 1 (of the) preseason, then we can start adding some more flavor.”

2. Is Chase Daniel the right backup?

Here are two facts about Daniel: He’s thrown a grand total of three passes since 2014, and he has extensive knowledge of Nagy’s offense.

The Bears signed Daniel to, yes, be the guy to come off the bench in case something were to happen to Trubisky. What the Philadelphia Eagles did with Nick Foles after Carson Wentz tore his ACL last year put a spotlight on the importance of backup quarterbacks (think some teams, like the Houston Texans, could’ve used Colin Kaepernick?). Daniel has never attempted more than 38 passes in a single season in his career, and while he’s confident he could do well if called upon, ideally for the Bears the 31-year-old doesn’t have to play much this year.

What Daniel was brought here for was to provide another resource for Trubisky. Not only does Daniel know Nagy’s offense well from spending 2013-2015 with him in Kansas City, but he spent four years with an up-close look at one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL in Drew Brees while with the New Orleans Saints. So far, the pairing of Daniel and Trubisky has been beneficial beneath the Nagy-Helfrich-Ragone trio: During OTAs, Daniel’s knowledge of the offense meant he could show Trubisky checks and reads he may not have seen yet within a play, for instance.

“I think just having experience in the offense and knowing hey, this route is going to come open for this coverage or hey, I know my checks versus certain coverages,” Daniel said. “This offense is very quarterback-centric, it puts a lot of pressure on the quarterback to get in and out of the right play at the right time, and to make the right decision post-snap. I think Mitch is learning that and doing a really good job.”

3. How good can Trubisky be?

This isn’t the only question that matters for the 2018 Bears, but it is the most important. When all the hype about the offseason moves made by Ryan Pace is stripped away, what matters the most is if the Bears have a good quarterback or not.

The Bears are, of course, confident they have a good one in Trubisky. But Trubisky completed only 59 percent of his passes as a rookie and threw as many touchdowns as interceptions (seven) while winning only four of 12 starts. Granted, those numbers came while working with a sub-optimal coaching staff and a sub-optimal group of teammates (though you’d never get Trubisky to say that — he impressed everyone at Halas Hall with how he handled all that losing last year).

We won’t know the answer to this question until sometime this fall, after we see Trubisky operate Nagy’s offense for a few weeks or months. But like OTAs and minicamp, training camp and preseason games will be critical for building Trubisky’s foundation for the 2018 season.

So should you watch for in Bourbonnais and then in the five preseason games (only three of which Trubisky will likely play in)? Keep this general frame around those games and practices: If Trubisky makes a mistake, that’s okay, so long as he doesn’t make the same mistake twice.