Chicago Bears fans are desperate to see Justin Fields under center as the starting quarterback.
And they will get their wish this weekend.
However, it is still only in preseason action.
Bears’ HC Matt Nagy said this morning that Justin Fields will start Saturday vs. Titans and play roughly two quarters.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 24, 2021
So what does this all mean?
What it means is that Andy Dalton is the Week 1 starter and Fields, as the backup, will get the start in the final exhibition game of the year.
That doesn’t necessarily mean he can’t prove something in the game, however, it won’t change the Week 1 starting situation.
Dalton has been the starter for months and the Bears are sticking with that plan for now.
Stats Not Important
The Bears are not going to change their minds no matter what Fields does this weekend.
He could throw for 300 yards and four touchdowns and Dalton will give him a pat on the back and start preparing for Week 1.
That is just the nature of the preseason and organizations rarely overreact to the results as much as fans.
The real focus in this game is the impending roster cuts that follow.
Players trying to make the team need to play well in order to get a job.
Someone like Fields is already the quarterback of the future and is now just getting some needed reps.
What fans don’t want to see is the rookie get lit up like he did against the Buffalo Bills.
Justin Fields took a brutal hit against the Bills 👀
He stayed in to close out the rest of the game pic.twitter.com/g6Bwd6MJPo
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) August 21, 2021
That is always the fear when backup offensive linemen are in the game against defenders looking for that one big play to make a highlight worthy of a roster spot.
Yet this is still great experience for Fields because it should force him to be quicker in the pocket and get rid of the ball to protect himself.
If he cannot, well, Bears fans can worry about that if the situation does indeed happen.
Hopefully, the massive hit he took against the Bills was a wake-up call.
Rolling With Dalton
Bears fans obviously want to see the shiny new toy that is Fields.
But Dalton is still no slouch and is getting paid $10 million in 2021.
That means the team is in no rush to bench him and pay him all that money after already committing to him earlier this year.
So when could Fields finally end up as the starter?
Matt Nagy and GM Ryan Pace are likely on the hot seat in Chicago and the team opens up the season on a Sunday night against the Los Angeles Rams.
If Dalton looks absolutely terrible on a national stage, Fields getting in for the Week 2 matchup against the lowly Cincinnati Bengals could be possible.
However, Week 3 is against the Cleveland Browns so patience may be required in Chicago no matter how Dalton performs.