Matt Nagy wanted to seize back control of his offense during this offseason. That involved two goals. Finding quarterbacks he believes can elevate the system and resuming play calling duties from Bill Lazor, who took over midway through last season. That second part came under a lot of criticism from fans and media. There was a reason he gave up the call sheet in the first place. Too often the offense looked out of sync and lifeless under his direction.
Nagy insisted things would be fine. Well, they’re not fine. Through the first two games of the preseason, his offense has managed just six points in the first half. Total. Those came on a brilliant catch-and-run by Rodney Adams for 73 yards. Outside of that it’s most been three-and-outs or turnovers. No rhythm and no energy. Sound familiar? It was brutal to watch. Sure it was preseason and a lot of starters didn’t play.
That is a poor excuse.
The lack of execution. The mental mistakes and the inability to put together anything cohesive? That falls at the feet of the guy running the offense. Nagy might think he bought himself time by drafting Justin Fields. He still seems to have the confidence of ownership. While a preseason loss isn’t going to change that, it still serves as a warning sign that he doesn’t seem to have what it takes to conduct a proper NFL offense.
Perhaps that changes once he opens up the playbook during the regular season. He better hope so. Fans wanted him gone at the end of last season. It’s a safe bet their anger with him hasn’t cooled much since then. It certainly won’t after this game. Especially if he stands by Dalton moving forward.
Those boos are starting to get loud for Andy Dalton pic.twitter.com/WUQFx0lvcf
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) August 21, 2021
Matt Nagy has just as much to prove as any player
Most tend to agree that only a terrible 2021 season will get him fired. Well, experts say they have the hardest schedule in the NFL this year. Against several playoff teams. If this is the version of the Bears that show up most of that stretch? They’re going to have a hard time winning any games. Let alone enough to be in the playoff hunt. The defense is still solid but not the suffocating unit it was a couple of years ago.
They need the offense to pick up the slack. Given how Dalton has looked through two halves? He isn’t what they’re going to need. Yes, Fields is a rookie and yes he might not be ready. Yet it is becoming impossible to deny that he probably gives them the best chance to win this year. He’ll make mistakes but the Bears can’t afford to be afraid. Matt Nagy needs a spark for his team and probably even more so for himself.
His offense is becoming too hard to watch otherwise.
It will be interesting to see how things go next week on the road in Nashville against another good team in the Titans. Nagy has to have the Bears better prepared for that one. Give people some hope that he is figuring this thing out. Otherwise, his job could once again be in question a few months from now.