NFL

Are the Bears Setting Mitchell Trubisky up to Fail?

Mitchell Trubisky has been a disappointing player throughout the season. After making a name for himself during the 2018 season, many expected Trubisky to take another leap, but he has regressed in nearly every way. Many have pointed fingers at Trubisky as a result of his struggles, and he hasn’t absolved himself of criticism by any means. However, it’s possible that Mitchell Trubisky’s failed time in the NFL is the fault of the people around him.

Mitchell Trubisky’s regression

Trubisky had a rough first season in Chicago, throwing seven interceptions to match his seven touchdowns. His sophomore campaign, however, while not on par with Patrick Mahomes and other rising stars, turned more than a few heads in NFL circles.

He threw for 3,223 yards, 24 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions in 14 games. He completed nearly 67% of his passes that year and led the Bears to an 11-3 record in his starts. 

Despite this hot season, Trubisky hasn’t cut it this year. His yards per game are down by nearly 30, he’s been sacked more, and the Bears are struggling to rise above being more than a middling team. His 13 touchdowns in 11 games are well below the rate he was throwing it into the endzone last year, and barring two major performances his yards for the season will be way down, too. 

Trubisky has not had the spark he displayed last year and the Bears have been uninspiring at best. However, while Trubisky can play better, the Bears are doing him no favors. 

What are the options?

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Following a 19-14 win over the New York Giants, Trubisky spoke with the media about his season. Fans who have been watching the Bears will note that Trubisky has performed well when the offense has sped up, but Nagy seems to insist on running a more economical offense that relies on the run and does not put the ball in Trubisky’s hand. Trubisky likes the faster-paced offenses because it lets him react rather than playing it safe. 

“I can just see the defense, (I’m) not thinking as much, guys are in their spots, (not) worried about the play clock,” Trubisky said (per NBC Sports Chicago). “You’re just seeing space, you’re seeing the defense and you’re kind of just reacting, and it’s something I’ve been doing my whole life, so it’s more natural for me.”

Trubisky has seen great success throwing on the run and during play action, and he acknowledged that these situations are more inside his wheelhouse, and they could be seen as a subtle jab to what Nagy is running the offense.

Nagy’s offense has been called predictable, so when the team goes off script, they are more likely to catch the other team off guard and make them pay in more ways than one. Trubisky sees this and wants to take advantage of it.

“On the ball, (the defense) can’t substitute and we’re not substituting either, so everybody knows where their spots are at and we’re playing fast, and I think that’s when we play free and guys are getting in the right spots and guys are making plays,” Trubisky said (per NBC sports). “I’m seeing the defense, and they’re not doing a bunch of crazy looks because we’re going fast, and they’ve got to respect that.” 

With all of this said, you would think that the team would adjust to a more free-flowing offense, but that has not been the case. 

Is it the Bears’ fault Mitchell Trubisky has failed?

It is rare for a team to have success when the coach and his staff do not have faith in the quarterback. While the Bears may be willing to move on from Trubisky, they might be doing both he and the team a disservice with their treatment of the young quarterback.

The Ravens have made a lot of headlines this year with their offense, led by Greg Roman, adjusting to Jackson’s strengths despite some perceived weaknesses. The Bears are not doing this. By not doing this the Bears are simply setting Mitchell Trubisky up to fail.

There is not 100% blame on any side of the problem, but Trubisky might be more of a product of the team he plays for, not the problem with it. Until the Bears can play to either he or another quarterback’s strengths and weaknesses, things will only get worse for the struggling team