(Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/3b/e2/mitch-trubisky-090519-getty-ftr_hr5bej9tqrgo1gimw8xllgphb.jpg?t=78138117&w=500&quality=80 It’s highly unlikely Trubisky will ever be a player at the level of Mahomes or Watson, but after watching him last season, it’s clear he has the talent to have a long career as a quality NFL starter. He just needs to be coached up and to not feel overwhelmed by his draft status or the Chicago boo-birds.Those fans might as well support their QB, because he’s not going anywhere anytime soon. But good luck convincing the rabid Bears fans to cut their young QB some slack.Jeff Diamond is a former president of the Titans and former vice president/general manager of the Vikings. He was selected NFL Executive of the Year in 1998. Diamond is currently a business and sports consultant who also does broadcast and online media work. He makes speaking appearances to corporate/civic groups and college classes on negotiation and sports business/sports management. He is the former chairman and CEO of The Ingram Group. Follow Jeff on Twitter: @jeffdiamondNFL. Mitchell Trubisky is not losing his job as the Bears’ starting quarterback anytime soon. It’s simply too early in the 25-year-old’s career for Chicago to give up on the second overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.The anti-Mitch crowd, fueled by the Bears’ disappointing season along with lingering bitterness that Chicago drafted Trubisky over Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson, is hoping general manager Ryan Pace and coach Matt Nagy send the third-year passer packing and look to free agency or a talented incoming draft class for the next Bears starting QB. All signs pointed up for Trubisky entering his third season, but it’s been a disaster thus far for the 5-6 Bears. His passer rating has dropped to 80.5. He has rushed for only 76 yards, and he is 4-5 in the games in which he has played, missing the Raiders game and most of the Vikings game when he was knocked out in the first series with a shoulder injury. He has missed far too many open receivers and appears much more tentative than he did last season.Most damaging were his performances in the recent losses to the Eagles (125 passing yards and no TDs) and Rams (seven points generated by the offense). Nagy claimed a hip injury caused him to pull Trubisky on the Bears’ last drive — which conspiracy theorists question — and the young QB looked shaken post-game.Unless Trubisky has a big turnaround in the last five games — which is unlikely given the state of the Bears’ offense and a tough remaining schedule against four winning teams — the QB spot and his play will be discussed often in the offseason. Pace and Nagy know the Bears’ offensive struggles are not all on Trubisky. Last year’s leading rusher Jordan Howard (935 yards) was traded to Philadelphia, and his replacement, rookie David Montgomery, has been less productive. Chicago’s rushing attack has fallen from No. 11 last year with 121 yards per game to No. 29 this season (80 yards per game). Trubisky was sacked 24 times all of last season, and he already has been sacked 25 times through his 10 games, so the offensive line is not as effective in run blocking and pass protection.Chicago’s vaunted defense also has slipped compared to its outstanding level of play last year. The unit has fallen from No. 3 to No. 8 overall and, more importantly, is creating far fewer turnovers (36 last year and only 14 so far this season). Thus, there is less setting up the offense with short fields for easier scoring opportunities. In addition, star linebacker Khalil Mack’s numbers are down; he has 6.5 sacks and 5 tackles for loss thus far compared to 12.5 sacks and 10 TFLs last season.Injuries to a couple top players currently on injured reserve, tight end Trey Burton and guard Kyle Long, have hampered the Bears offense. And the defense misses Pro Bowl defensive lineman Akiem Hicks, who was a force last season.MORE FROM DIAMOND:Projecting Mahomes’ unprecedented contractBut it’s the way of the NFL world that the QB gets more credit than he deserves when winning and more blame than warranted in a losing season, especially when the expectations were so high.Nagy had a terrific first season as Bears coach, earning numerous coach of the year honors for 2018. The onus is on him to rebuild Trubisky’s confidence and get his game back to last year’s level or better, which was the expectation. Pace needs to help the cause by upgrading his QB’s supporting cast. He also should draft a QB in the second, third or fourth round from a strong class to challenge Trubisky and provide a possible future option if necessary. And perhaps bring in a veteran free agent with a better track record than that of backup QB Chase Daniel. (Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/ae/2/trubisky-nagy-010219-getty-ftrjpg_zqqt3cvwpnfe1bnyumw2s0jnn.jpg?t=266845288&w=500&quality=80 I say the Bears will first look to Trubisky’s fine performance last season before giving up on the QB for whom they traded several picks to move up and select. Pace, with significant input from Bears chairman George McCaskey and president/CEO Ted Phillips, also will factor in Trubisky’s affordable contract. The QB has a $9.238 million cap number next season the team can lower by exercising his fifth-year option, which would only be guaranteed for injury.Even more pertinent is the same amount of dead money against the Bears cap if they cut or trade him, in which case they would officially label Trubisky as a huge draft bust. That’s not good on a GM’s resume.WEEK 12 NFL PICKS:Against the spread | Straight-up predictionsTrubisky’s issues remind me of when I joined the Titans in 1999. The pressure was on QB Steve McNair to live up to his high draft status as the third overall pick a few years earlier. The team had gone 8-8 in each of his two seasons as starter, and he had completed only 56 percent of his passes with a 76 passer rating. McNair was having a difficult time adjusting to the NFL after playing at small college Alcorn State.Our coach Jeff Fisher believed in McNair’s talent and was patient with him. McNair responded by leading us to the Super Bowl in 1999. He followed that with three Pro Bowl seasons, including his NFL MVP year in 2003.Like McNair, Trubisky had some growing pains entering the NFL after starting only one season at North Carolina. He often was too quick to take off and run without reading the defense and fumbled 10 times in his rookie year. But he was up to speed in his second season with Nagy as his tutor and quarterbacked the Bears to the 2018 NFC North title. To refresh some memories, he went 11-3 as the starter (missing two games due to a shoulder injury), threw 24 touchdown passes, 12 interceptions and had a 95.4 passer rating to rank 16th among starters.Trubisky also was a running threat last season with 421 rushing yards and three TDs. He was a Pro Bowl pick. In the wild-card round of the playoffs against the Eagles, he threw for 303 yards, one TD, no interceptions and led a late drive to set up the game-winning field goal attempt that infamously was a double-doink miss by Cody Parkey.
Powered By Impressive Business WordPress Theme