Monday, April 22, 2024

NFL Coach Sees One Glaring Flaw With Bears’ Plan For Caleb Williams


GM Ryan Poles has done quite the job constructing the Chicago Bears offense over the past two years. He added playmakers like D.J. Moore, Keenan Allen, and D’Andre Swift. His offensive line features two young and reliable tackles. They replaced Luke Getsy with a more experienced offensive coordinator, Shane Waldron. It isn’t perfect, but all things considered, this is the best setup the Bears have prepared to accept a young quarterback, maybe in their franchise history. Certainly better than what awaited Mitch Trubisky and Justin Fields. It is a good situation for Caleb Williams to step into.

However, not everybody is impressed with it. Bruce Feldman of The Athletic spoke to some people around the league. They fear the uncertainty on the coaching staff, specifically Matt Eberflus’ job security, threatens to derail Williams’ development if things don’t go well early. It is the same problem they ran into with John Fox and Matt Nagy. One coach expressed a more specific issue with the Bears’ structure. It is something that hasn’t been talked about a lot.

They don’t have a seasoned veteran QB on the roster.

For starters, Mahomes got to sit for a year behind a former Pro Bowl QB in Alex Smith, who was once the first pick of the draft and a respected leader on the team. “That is critical,” said the coach, who added that when he took the quarterback coaching job at his team, he made sure his franchise had a very seasoned, well-liked guy who had played for a decade-plus in the NFL to be there for his young starting QB. “Mahomes had a really good pro example to be around there in Alex.”…

…“I was looking to see, who are they bringing in for (Williams), who is that veteran? I don’t care if it’s Jameis Winston, whoever. Somebody who has been in there and done it, and can say, ‘Hey, Caleb. Hey, man, come over here.’ That’s what you’re hoping to see that they’re not making the same mistake again that they made with Justin. It’s critical, man, that a young quarterback has the right type of example, the right peers, the right room to have success early. Brett Rypien may be an awesome guy, but will Caleb Williams respect him? I don’t know. He might, but who will be that guy for him that can say, ‘Hey, Caleb, you’re screwing up, man. Hey, Caleb, I get here at 6 in the morning. Where were you?’”

Caleb Williams could use a veteran sounding board.

History shows this approach is one that works. John Elway had veteran Steve DeBerg to learn from in 1983. Eli Manning had Kurt Warner in 2004. Philip Rivers had Drew Brees. Tom Brady had Drew Bledsoe. Patrick Mahomes had Alex Smith. C.J. Stroud had Case Keenum. There is a lot of evidence to support this theory. Brett Rypien and Tyson Bagent have only started eight games combined in their careers. Chicago has to think about adding somebody more battle-tested. There are some options available.

The best available is Ryan Tannehill. A former Pro Bowler, the 35-year-old has started 151 games since 2012 and made the playoffs three times. He understands what it’s like to carry the expectations of a 1st round pick. There is also Blaine Gabbert. He’s been in the league for 12 years, starting 49 games. In that time, he also backed up Brady and Mahomes during Super Bowl title runs. He’s seen how the best of the best do it. Maybe the Bears could lure Teddy Bridgewater out of retirement as well.

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It depends on who they think would mesh with Caleb Williams best and might give him the advice he needs to excel.


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Apr 22, 2024 5:29 pm

It’s simply a matter of intention and motivation or motive. When someone has the intent to become great, they motivate themselves to get there. By all accounts, that’s what Caleb learned from his father. He has pushed himself to be the best. He eats, drinks and sleeps the parts of his game he needs to improve I’ll bet. Who is going to instill more than that in him? Mommy maybe…(snicker). Just kidding. My point is simple. Deny his physical tools all you want naysayers, but the strength his intent to be the best and motivation he has displayed to improve… Read more »

Apr 22, 2024 8:33 am

If Caleb Williams needs to be prodded to work hard and seek answers then he’s simply not
“Generational” and we’ve made a mistake for not trading the pick. I expect Shane Waldron will be the “Mentor” in this situation. I’ve had my reservations but am now on board as I said I would be and fully expect Ryan Poles will not make this pick if he believes Williams is not a dedicated and focused young man.

Apr 22, 2024 4:20 am

Sure, a clipboard carrier is just what the doctor ordered. Maybe, just maybe CW doesn’t have the same processing problems as some QBs. Tyson Bagent learned all the plays before the season started last year and knew how to check down during plays. I think really, he would be better suited as the bridge because he is younger and is only one year removed from being thrown into the fire. Besides they already have Rypien, who knows what Waldron runs. Just look at what the Texans QB did last year with a lot less talent.

Dr. Steven Sallie
Dr. Steven Sallie
Apr 21, 2024 4:43 pm

So, which is better: a veteran soundboard or QB competition?

Apr 21, 2024 2:38 pm

While advocating for the Bears to keep JF, I researched all the QB’s drafted #1 and found that many of them threw MORE interceptions than TD’s their first, and even their second seasons. Williams will make rookie mistakes, no doubt. But there is room for mistakes to be overcome with the supporting cast built around him. IMO The college scouting reports left me questioning Williams ability being better than Fields, but looking at the film is what changed my thinking. Williams kept his eyes upfield when scrambling. His release is noticeably quicker than Fields, and his ability to throw from… Read more »

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