National Football League

Trubisky Out: Fair or Foul?

September 28

On Sunday, the Windy City football franchise blew its three-year starting quarterback right over to the sideline.

And on Monday, the decision became more than just an aberration.

Early in the third quarter of Sunday's matchup with the Atlanta Falcons, with the Bears trailing 26-10, veteran QB Nick Foles took the field for the first time in his Chicago tenure, after the team acquired him via trade this offseason.

Up until that point, Trubisky had completed 13-of-22 passes for 128 yards and a touchdown. He also had 1 carry for 45 yards. 

However, on the third play of the Bears' first possession in the second half, Trubisky was picked off for the first time on the day and the third time this season, and Chicago head coach Matt Nagy pulled the trigger on tossing Foles behind center. 

Foles would throw a touchdown on his first possession at the helm, but the call was reversed and ruled an interception. 

However, in the fourth quarter, the former Super Bowl MVP would make amends.

After the game, Trubisky was honest in sharing his feelings regarding being benched, but at the same time, threw his support behind Foles.

"I just accepted the news, and I had Nick's back like he's had mine. The situation sucked ... but coach made the decision he felt was best for the team. I'm really happy for this team. It was awesome to get a W.

"It sucks to get news like that but that's just how it goes."

Said Nagy on Monday: "We got up this morning and went through the tape and at the end of it we decided that we're going to start Foles as a starter against Indianapolis ... I want to credit both of those guys in yesterday's situation for being really supportive of each other this whole time, even as hard as that was for Mitch to be told that Nick's going to go in and play."

NFL reporter Ian Rapoport also expanded on Nagy's decision on Monday morning.

So, was Trubisky's benching justified? 

Let's take a look at the numbers.

Entering the day, the Bears were 2-0 on the season. Trubisky was averaging 216 passing yards per game, and he had thrown five touchdowns compared to two interceptions.

It equalled Chicago's first 2-0 start since the 2013 season, and the first time that the franchise stood at 2-0 since drafting Trubisky in 2017 with the No. 2 pick.

However, the numbers can sometimes be a bit deceiving.

Chicago's two wins came against Detroit in Week 1 and the New York Giants in Week 2, two teams that are a combined 1-5 so far this season. 

The Giants are currently the second-worst offense in the league in terms of yards per game (272.3) and points per game (12.7), and their three losses have come by nearly two touchdowns per game (13.7 points).

Detroit's lone win of the season came against Arizona on Sunday, courtesy of a last-second field goal from Matt Prater.

Trubisky and the Bears defeated both Detroit (27-23) and New York (17-13) by 4 points, and in the first three weeks, Trubisky's passer rating sits at 26th in the league.

His completion percentage sits at 30th, and he is one of only five quarterbacks completing less than 60 percent of his passes.

Still, as a starter, Trubisky is 26-18 (including yesterday's win) since 2017, and in two of his three seasons, he's led the Bears to winning records. 

Foles' career has been a unique one to say the least. He is a 9-year veteran and led the Philadelphia Eagles to a Super Bowl victory over Tom Brady and the New England Patriots at the end of the 2017 season, after Eagles starter Carson Wentz went down with a season-ending injury in Week 14. 

He also made the Pro Bowl in 2013 and led the league in passer rating that same year.

However, Foles is a career-backup, having only started 48 games since entering the NFL. Only twice has he started 10 or more games in a season, and in six of his nine seasons, Foles has started eight or fewer games. 

Regardless, Foles is now officially starting in Chicago, the fifth team he's started for at some point in the past nine years. 

The Bears take on Indianapolis in Week 4.

We'll see if Foles can hold off the 2-1 Colts – and, his newly-minted backup.


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