Justin Fields took entirely too many hits as a QB in 2021, I don’t think anyone would disagree. Being sacked 36 times which puts him at 3 sacks per game, and that’s not including just the hits that he took either running the ball or getting hit as he released the ball. He was sacked 11.8% of the time – in case you were curious, that’s a lot. I respect the effort that he gives on the field but the fact is he struggles getting the ball out is definitely a problem. Fields needs to learn how to chuck the ball – when things are going sideways, instead of running backwards 5 and 6 yards trying to make some phenomenal play with his feet.
When playing at Ohio State, he was the guy everybody was watching and he was the Top Dog, and teams couldn’t stop him – but now he’s playing in the big leagues, where players are faster, smarter, and bigger. The rolling out and darting off down-filled is going to be picked up much quicker now. Now of course the former Buckeye really didn’t have any real weapons at wideout for him to use, Darnell Mooney is a potentially decent WR, at best, and Allen Robinson couldn’t seem to get open. Their best player as an offensive skill player was probably David Montgomery who got them 849 on the ground & 301 through the air last season. The Oline is certainly not anything to be happy with – and Fields did not help them with his decision-making. Although exciting and fun to have a QB with the ability to take off when things break down, it isn’t helping young players with proper decision making and learning how to read a defense.
The Bears team as a whole were terrible on offense, scoring just 18.3 per game for the year and scoring 27 or more only 3 times. The 6-3 QB is not solely responsible for putting points on the board, but he is a large portion of the offensive identity. And the Bears offensive identity was not good. I wasn’t a huge fan of Justin Fields when he was drafted, I thought he lacked the ability to read a blitz and struggled with awareness, to be the next big thing for the Bears. I don’t think that a whole lot of people thought that Fields was going to turn around the Bears franchise immediately. But to be fair, we have to remember he’s only played 12 games as a professional football player, I think it’s fair to give any young QB more time before being harshly criticized. The first year for a rookie QB, in my opinion, is the potential year.
See what they do well and hope that continues to grow.
See what they did poorly, and hope to see improvement in the next year.
Very rarely do you see a QB explode in their rookie year, oftentimes I think that fans get caught up in the anomalies, and then expect their QB to do the same thing when they hit the field. And that really is very unrealistic and unfair. Overall his rookie season was pretty forgettable, nothing that stood out exceptional. His passing percentage was 58.9% and his QBR was only 26.4. 2022 is the year that I think the Chicago Bears should be more excited about. Whether they improve or not as a team will definitely be based on what kind of talent they can get around the 22 year old.
Losing their big offseason signing, former 1st rd WR draft choice, 6-4 N’Keal Harry indefinitely, does not help, and Byron Pringle with his injury status is concerning as well. I think the Bears were hoping to get those guys on the field with their QB and start something new. It looks like they have tried to get him some better quality players, but with their WR issues they have now, they may need even some more help.