CHICAGO – Justin Fields doesn’t judge his progress by numbers.
As for the last four games, the Bears’ valuable rookie quarterback wasn’t about to list specific benchmarks he wanted to achieve.
“I didn’t really have any expectations for the season,” he said. “I take it day to day. You know, I didn’t put a number on how many touchdowns I was supposed to have, this and that.”
Fields’ arm and mobility make the Bears think he can grow into an elite quarterback and stabilize a position that haunted the founding NFL franchise.
The former Ohio State star also has room to grow and could be put to the test when Chicago (4-9) hosts Minnesota (6-7) on Monday night. Vikings, after all, tend to give rookie quarterbacks headaches.
“Justin has seen some defenses that like to bring it in and he’s seen some that are a bit calmer, and this one here, when they’ve got you in certain situations, they’re going to attack you so that will be good for him. “said coach Matt Nagy.
The Vikings in eight seasons under coach Mike Zimmer and his lauded defensive strategy are 7-3 in games against a rookie starting quarterback, including 7-1 since the start of 2017. They have beaten Mitchell Trubisky and the Bears twice this season. Over those 10 games, rookies are averaging just 179 passing yards per game with a total of just seven touchdowns and four rushing scores. The Vikings totaled 10 interceptions and 27 sacks.