(670 The Score) While most of the analysis of the Bears’ futile offensive performance in a 26-6 loss to the Browns on Sunday afternoon has focused on coach Matt Nagy’s perplexing game plan and the line’s abysmal performance in allowing nine sacks, WFAN host and NFL on CBS analyst Boomer Esiason’s focus is on rookie quarterback Justin Fields.
In Esiason’s mind, Fields shouldn’t be starting for the Bears because he doesn’t yet grasp the system.
“The kid, he is just not ready, especially when you play on the road against a good defense,” Esiason said on the Parkins & Spiegel Show on Monday evening. “We can sit here and discuss the offensive line. We can discuss the running back. We can discuss the game plan and how you want to tailor it to the quarterback. But if the quarterback’s not ready and the quarterback is incapable of handling it, you’re going to have exactly what you saw (Sunday).
“Not everybody can be ready. I’m going to blame the pressure that has been put on the Chicago Bears front office to play a kid that’s obviously not ready to step on an NFL football field. And I pray to god he doesn’t get hurt. And Danny (Parkins), I think you’re part of that pressure because I think you echo the fan base. You want to see Justin Fields. Because you know the kid can be great. But he has to know what he’s doing before he can be great. And what we saw (Sunday) against a really good defense was really a disaster of epic proportions. I mean, the other rookie quarterbacks all struggled (Sunday), but not like Justin did. So I just think he needs to go to the bench, he needs to practice. They need to develop him. And maybe, just maybe in Week 10, Week 11, Week 12, maybe by then he’ll understand some of the concepts that are in that offensive game plan. And he will not be the reason that they lose. He’ll be the reason that they win. Because right now, he is clearly not ready.”
Fields was 6-of-20 for 68 yards in the loss Sunday. The Bears produced just 47 net yards of total offense, their second-lowest figure since 1966, and averaged a pitiful 1.1 yards per play.
Listen to Esiason’s full interview below.