Mitch Trubisky Says Bears Made Him Play ‘Coaches’ Game

Mitch Trubisky Says Bears Made Him Play ‘Coaching Game’ appeared first on NBC Sports Chicago

Mitch Trubisky never had a chance.

After all the truth and malice about the Bears’ previous regime behind Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace has been revealed, it’s all starting to add up.

Once the pair were fired after last season, the truth about Nagy’s attitude toward Mitch Trubisky came out. A team source via The Athletic says, “Mitch never checked the boxes for Nagy from Day 1.”

But according to Trubisky, he feels he did his part for the team.

“We won a lot of games,” Trubisky said in an article with Sports Illustrated. (He posted a winning 29-21 quarterback record while in Chicago.) “I’ve made a lot of big plays, contributed to those winning teams, and I knew I was a leader in that locker room. People can say what they want about that. I’m proud of my work there.”

Trubisky landed in Chicago after the team traded up to get him with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 draft. The front office infamously let go of Deshaun Watson, who was a national champion at Clemson, and Patrick Mahomes out of Texas Tech .

The North Carolina star sat behind Mike Glennon in his first season with the team as they bridged the gap to become a regular starter. He put stats on the board, throwing for just over 2,000 yards and throwing for seven touchdowns.

However, in 2018 it blew up. He helped the team to a 12-4 record on his way to his first and only nod since the Pro-Bowl nod. He threw for about 3,200 yards and 24 touchdowns, while rushing for 421 yards and three more touchdowns.

From that season, everything started to go downhill. The team finished with back-to-back .500 records. Trubisky never replicated his performance in 2018 and commanded a below-average NFL offense.

Once the 2020 season ended, the Bears opted not to re-sign him to the team. In free agency, he landed with the Buffalo Bills as the backup to Josh Allen. But while playing under Allen and Sean McDermott, he flourished and learned a lot to match his game.

“I would say I process faster now. I know where I want to go with the ball,” Trubisky said. “I can trust my abilities and play a lot more freely, not just go where the coach wants with the football. I think it was very close to just having a trust and being on the same page with the offensive coordinator. I felt like in Buffalo, the quarterback had a lot more freedom to go where he wanted with the reads and go where he wanted with the ball, unlike Chicago.

“Even if you have completion [in Chicago], I felt that sometimes it wasn’t necessarily what the coach wanted. They put you in a box a little more than you wanted to be and I think that limits you as a player. They’re just different experiences. In the end, we still won games. It’s just different team to team.”

There is no question that Nagy misused Trubisky while in Chicago. Nagy ran Andy Reid’s offense as one of his students. In this offense, the quarterback is limited to the pocket most of the time. However, with a below-average offensive line and a quarterback that thrives on the run, that combination of factors doesn’t lead to success.

But, after spending time in Buffalo and now getting back on his feet in Pittsburgh, he’s ready to compete. Trubisky, rookie Kenny Pickett and Mason Rudolph are in training camp competition for the starting job in Pittsburgh.

According to reports from Steelers reporters, he had a lot of success during the first week of training camp and received the most reps with the first-team offense. He and Rudolph are exponentially ahead of Pickett, via the same references.

“I want him to play and have fun,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. “We hadn’t talked much about his experiences before we got here because really in terms of what we do it’s irrelevant. But I guess he’s experienced some negativity and so on, and so I just want him to have fun. I want it to play fast and free. I don’t want to work with him worrying too much, thinking about making mistakes and things like that.”

Trubisky is ready with a second chance to redeem himself as a bona fide starter.

As for Chicago, it is on the cusp of a rebuild under a brand new regime. Under coach Matt Eberflus and general manager Ryan Poles, the Bears are trying to create a new culture and operating method.

“In Chicago, they wanted me to play the coaches’ game,” Trubisky said. “Call it what you want, that’s how I felt. That’s been my experience, from what I saw in Chicago to what I saw in Buffalo.

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