Thinking back to draft day on April 27th brings back mixed emotions. Most of the analysts, beat writers, and anyone with any knowledge of football, assumed the Chicago Bears were going to either pick Jamal Adams, Solomon Thomas, or trade down to get some additional and much needed picks. Nobody, not even Trubisky himself, knew what the Bears were going to do next once it was announced that they had made a trade from the third overall pick up to the second overall pick. I thought for sure at this point the Bears would be picking their new defensive star or Deshaun Watson, since he was the type of quarterback that had the skills and leadership necessary to bring winning football back to Chicago. Instead, the Bears shocked the world and selected Mitchell Trubisky; a player that could not become the starting quarterback for a college that was not known for their football program. Trubisky had to sit on the bench for two years behind a no name quarterback before getting his opportunity; however, once he was given the chance he hit the ground running.
When looking at Trubisky’s stats from his record breaking year at North Carolina, I couldn’t help but notice that they looked very similar to that of Dak Prescott’s final college year. Trubisky threw for 304/447, 68 completion percentage, 3,748 yards, 30 touchdowns, and only 6 interceptions. Prescott threw for 316/477, 66.2 completion percentage, 3,793 yards, 29 touchdowns, and only 5 interceptions. Their stats were almost identical.
Prescott and Trubisky are both great athletes who have the ability to move well around the pocket and make plays on the run. Prescott was lucky enough to be given his opportunity in the pros sooner than he expected. When Tony Romo went down with, what ended up being, a career ending injury in Week 3 of the preseason against the Seattle Seahawks, Prescott was thrusted into the starting lineup to start the 2016 season. By Week 6 of the regular season, Prescott broke the record for most consecutive pass attempts without an interception to start a career with 176 attempts.
With Trubisky’s similar accuracy and skillset, he should do well as an NFL quarterback as well. I am not saying he will have the same immediate success as Prescott, but the Bears do have a lot of the necessary pieces in place to help Trubisky succeed. Prescott had the league’s rushing leader Ezekiel Elliott to rely on, and Trubisky will have Jordan Howard who averaged more yards per carry than Elliott and possibly could have rushed for more yards had he started the season as the first string running back. The Cowboys are known for their top notch offensive line, as are the Bears, who had the fifth highest ranked offensive line according to Pro Football Focus. Prescott and Howard were both diamonds in the rough who were drafted in the fourth and fifth rounds respectively. Meanwhile, Elliott and Trubisky are both top five overall draft picks. The main difference is that the Cowboys also have a Pro Bowl caliber wide receiver named Dez Bryant, and future hall of famer Jason Witten. Don’t get me wrong, Trubisky will have some talented weapons as well such as: Cameron Meredith, Kevin White, Adam Shaheen, and Kendall Wright just to name a few but not as special as what the Cowboys have. Losing Alshon Jeffery was not the ideal situation for a new quarterback coming to Chicago, but if any of the wide receivers can take the next step, especially Kevin White, then maybe this offense can lead the Bears to the playoffs.
Barring any setbacks, Trubisky will most likely not start the year as the Bears first string quarterback, but if Glennon either gets injured or completely tanks by Week 6 or so, Soldier Field will be roaring with chants for Trubisky. It will be an exciting time for Bears fans once Trubisky inevitably becomes the starter and the face of the franchise. It will be on him and his teammates to live up to the hype.
Only time will tell if Trubisky will burst onto the scene as Prescott did once given an opportunity, but it is pretty apparent that it is possible given the right surrounding cast, hard work, and dedication. All of which Trubisky has.