When John Fox met the media for his weekly Monday press conference, many were taken back when he said that rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky had his best game of this season this past Saturday.
The compliment is worth questioning as Trubisky threw three interceptions and had a quarterback rating of 66.8. Even with the stat line being bad, there were actually several bright spots to Trubisky’s toughest loss.
One of the aspects where Trubisky’s game has improved over the last few weeks has been his pre-snap presence at the line of scrimmage. Offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains praised his starting quarterback’s continuous ability to get his fellow teammates lined up correctly at the line.
He did the same against both the Bengals and 49ers weeks before. Another pre-snap positive shown by the rookie quarterback was the hard count as he drew the Lions offsides three times on Saturday for penalties.
Hall of Famer Kurt Warner, who was apart of the TV broadcast crew, was highly impressed with the young quarterback’s successful execution being on the road in a dome setting.
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) December 18, 2017
Many Bears pundits recently have been critical of the Bears lack of deep passing plays for their quarterback. Against the Lions, he was able to convert multiple long downs into first downs with precise down field pass plays. The first was when the Bears were facing a third and 18 late in the third quarter, the Bears quarterback found wide receiver Markus Wheaton well beyond the first down marker picking up the first down with a 22-yard completion.
Then in the fourth quarter, the team faced first and 17 on their own one yard. Trubisky, while throwing from his own end zone, connected with Markus Wheaton over the middle for a 20-yard completion.
The highly-touted arm strength was on display as there were a few special throws made that showed why Trubisky was such a highly touted prospect.
Those throws came in the fourth quarter with the first being a 19-yard completion to Kendall Wright. Trubisky threw the ball from the pocket to Wright in tight coverage along the far sideline and put the ball only where Wright would be able to grab it.
The other was another throw to Wright for a 12-yard completion during the final two minutes of the game. The target was questionable as Lions cornerback Quandre Diggs jumped the route and appeared to have picked off the pass, but the ball was fired with such velocity that it got past him and into Wright’s hands.
Statistically, it was a game that most rookie quarterbacks would want to forget, but there was a silver lining to what was seen in the game. The three interceptions came due to an overthrow, not seeing a safety, and a miscommunication on routes.
Those can be coached out with film review and practice and is sometimes good for a rookie’s maturation process. As much a game like this one are not fun, it’s always important to find the small victories to build on.