The Chicago Bears think they may have found their man in quarterback Justin Fields. The dual-threat gunslinger is entering his third season and the pressure is on. In fact, The Score’s Danny Parkins of the Audacy original podcast “1st & Pod” explained why Fields has the most pressure on him of any player in the league heading into Week 1.
“Justin Fields has the most pressure on him in Week 1 of any player in the NFL,” Parkins said (23:40 in player above). “More than Aaron Rodgers making his debut with the Jets.”
The Bears as a whole have a lot of pressure on them, but it’s mostly about figuring out what Fields is made of after a reportedly shaky training camp.
“If the Bears lose 30-27 and Justin Fields balls out and has a great game passing the football, it will be very disappointing here because the result of the game but a lot of people, myself included, won’t feel terrible about it,” Parkins continued. “Because there will be vindication and validation that not only do the Bears have their quarterback but he has actually stepped forward in the passing game and is not just running the football.”
There is some added pressure on Fields due to the matchup against Jordan Love and the Packers. Love has been biding his time on the Green Bay sideline while Fields has 27 NFL games (25 starts) under his belt.
“So of course you want to beat the Packers, it’s more, to me, about does Justin Fields take the step? Because a lot of the training camp reports have been not great about his accuracy in practice,” Parkins said. “We haven’t seen it in the preseason and if Jordan Love outplays Justin Fields, and it feels like they went from Favre to Rodgers to another quarterback – not Hall of Fame, but even just better than the Bears quarterback – it’ll be a disaster. So if the Packers run on the Bears but Fields throws on the Packers and the Bears lose, I can twist myself into a knot to be OK with that.”
While the Bears’ win total has declined in each of the last three seasons, Parkins would be content with another under .500 season as long as Fields progresses well.
“I would take seven wins for the Bears with Fields being awesome over 10 wins for the Bears and Fields not being awesome,” he said.
For Week 1, all eyes are going to be on the quarterback matchup in Bears vs. Packers.
“If Love outplays Fields and the Packers win, it’s a disaster,” Parkins said. “Fields needs to be good in this game.”