At this point, GM Ryan Poles didn’t make many friends in the media community with his 2022 off-season. The consensus is he should’ve allocated more resources to building the Chicago Bears‘ offense around Justin Fields. Instead, he played the cheap route in their eyes, shopping for bargains in free agency and using his first two draft picks on defense a month later. One person that hasn’t let up about this for months is Dan Orlovsky.
The former Detroit Lions quarterback and current ESPN analyst is anything but shy about his views of Fields’ situation. He believes the quarterback is doomed in 2022. There is no chance he can take a step forward. All one has to do is compare what other teams with second-year QBs spent on offense this year to know how much the Bears hung him out to dry. It is going to be a trainwreck. Plain and simple.
How much money their teams spent on 2nd year QB supporting cast for 2022 season:
Patriots (108M, most)
Jets (90M, 4th-most)
Jags (89M, 7th-most)
Bears ($52M, 2nd-fewest)
Fields has no shot at all. Get him to 2023 and than make your assessment
— Dan Orlovsky (@danorlovsky7) June 22, 2022
— Dan Orlovsky (@danorlovsky7) May 5, 2022
This stance isn’t overly surprising.
Orlovsky has NFL experience and has played the position. However, he also tends to drift wherever the popular winds blow. He just blows harder than most others. He may think his rants are in defense of Fields and directed entirely at the rest of the Bears’ offense. That is not the case. Whether he admits it or not, these statements are a direct jab at the young quarterback’s capability. The man is basically saying Fields can’t play well without elite talent around him.
To an ultra-competitor like the 23-year-old, that is an insult. He has already stated he believes the Bears have more talent than people keep saying. Not only that, but it’s easy to forget how much confidence he has in himself. He believes he can be that quarterback who can elevate everybody around him.
Justin Fields is on a mission to prove something.
People keep talking about the supporting cast not being good enough. They refuse to discuss how much better the actual offensive system could be this year. Fields was stuck in the directionless Matt Nagy scheme last season. This time he’ll be playing in a variation of the famous Shanahan wide-zome system, currently carrying teams like San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Green Bay to constant success. Offensive coordinator Luke Getsy insisted he would build things around what Fields does best.
If he lives up to that promise, the quarterback should play much better. Expect more play action and more designed rollouts to get him outside the pocket where he is most dangerous. As for the supporting cast? It might not be star-studded, but it feels somewhat underestimated. Darnell Mooney had over 1,000 yards last year. Cole Kmet topped 600 at tight end. David Montgomery and Khalil Herbert combined for 1600 total yards last season.
Again, all of this in an offense that was a complete mess.
It shouldn’t be crazy to think those guys can play much better in a more cohesive system. If that proves true, then Justin Fields is about to surprise many people. Especially Orlovsky. That would be a sweet bit of karma for the young QB.