Justin Fields said in May that he’s going to push to be the starting quarterback for the Bears, but the word from the team has been that they’re pretty set on starting Andy Dalton to kick off the 2021 season.
Head coach Matt Nagy said that after the team traded up to take Fields, reiterated it last month and PFT reported this month that the Bears told Dalton he would be the No. 1 quarterback when he was drafted. Nagy has pointed to his experience in Kansas City with Alex Smith and Patrick Mahomes in 2017 as a blueprint for how the Bears plan to move forward this season.
During an appearance on Cris Collinsworth’s podcast this week, Collinsworth asked Nagy if there’s any scenario he could envision changing courses before the start of the regular season.
“No, I mean, Andy is our starter. Again, I can’t predict anything. You know how it goes. There’s so many things that can happen between today and that Week 1, but Andy is our starter and Justin is our No. 2 and we’re going to stick to this plan,” Nagy said. “You always hope nothing happens to Andy as far as injuries or anything like that and that’s why I can’t say 100 percent . . . Andy is where we want him to be, he’s had a great OTAs and we’re just gonna continue to build with that.”
The Chiefs won 10 games and went to the playoffs in 2017, which made it much easier to stick with Smith while letting Mahomes develop. Nagy says that’s how things will go in Chicago “in a perfect world,” but there’s no guarantee lightning’s going to strike twice.