Ultimately, everybody knows that it will be his play on Sundays that determine his NFL future. However, Justin Fields isn’t dumb. He understands there is far more to his position as a quarterback than Xs and Os and throwing the ball to the right guy. Quarterbacks are expected to be the leaders of the team. They handle the football more than anybody. They determine the outcome of games more than any position by a wide margin.
To that end, it falls on the quarterback to do what he can to earn both the trust and the respect of his teammates. That means all sorts of things. Taking blame when a play goes wrong. Even if the play wasn’t necessarily his fault. Giving credit to teammates when things go right. Commanding the huddle and showing a willingness to engage in the locker room. That last part might be the most underrated of all.
It’s hard to connect with somebody if they don’t interact.
That doesn’t seem to be an issue with Fields. According to Albert Breer of the MMQB, the window is indeed open for the rookie to maybe grab the starting job. However, the odds are quite long. There are a number of hurdles he’ll have to clear before that happens. One of course is mastering the offensive language. Another is finding a way to win over his new teammates. Apparently, Fields didn’t need long to do that.
“Second is how Fields’s teammates respond to him, and Fields is well on his way there. One example came in a dance competition on the last day of OTAs. The players had a dance-off, offense vs. defense, and the offense had a rookie out there first. It started and, a few seconds in, Fields jumped in, helped his draft classmate, and brought the house down. It was a good sign, to the guys there, of how Fields understands leadership in a way where he knows where he’s at as a rookie, but also has a good feel for when to assert himself.”
Don’t be fooled by the stoic demeanor he puts out to the cameras. Fields has plenty of personality. His Instagram proves that much already. The guy isn’t afraid to mix it up with teammates in just about anything. Dancing too. He did it in high school and especially in college. Throw in his trademark competitiveness? It is hardly a shock he went all out to help the offense outshine the defense like that.
Justin Fields is approaching this situation perfectly
He isn’t trying to seize control of anything. There is no self-entitlement in how he acts. Sure the young QB is confident in himself but that isn’t an issue. It is about whether he is willing to embrace the team culture and pay his dues as a rookie. By the sound of things, this isn’t a problem at all. He isn’t causing a stir and continues to work his butt off every single day. When opportunities arise for him to make an impression, he never hesitates.
A strong reminder of just how intelligent he is. Not only with the playbook and memorizing key facets of an offense but a natural feel for how to connect with others. Understanding where and when to make his presence felt. Not a lot of quarterbacks understand this. Those that do tend to be successful in the NFL.
Yet another reason to be excited.
Justin Fields is at Halas Hall and ready for training camp. He put in a ton of work preparing for this coming stretch. Bears fans are eager to see him live for the first time. The preseason begins against Miami on August 14th. A game he is expected to see extended action in. If he does well? This might further his case for starting right away.