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Unnamed NFL exec blasts Justin Fields in alarming take down of Chicago Bears QB

The Chicago Bears had high expectations for young quarterback Justin Fields heading into his third season. General manager Ryan Poles had acquired Pro Bowl wide receiver D.J. Moore in a blockbuster trade while handing tight end Cole Kmet a big-money extension.

Through two weeks, it has not gone according to plan. Chicago finds itself at 0-2 on the season. For his part, Fields has thrown for all of 427 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions during that span.

In speaking with Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated, one unnamed AFC executive laid into Fields for his performance thus far as a third-year player. While the exec did point to Chicago’s bad offensive line (10 sacks allowed), most of the criticism was directed at Mr. Fields.

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“It’s a combination of a lot of things. Protection isn’t great, and when he does start getting hit, he starts to drop eyes,” the executive said of Justin Fields. “There’s no rhythm in the offense right now because the quarterback can’t see it.”

A quarterback that has now made 27 NFL regular-season starts not even being able to see the field. That has to be worrisome for the Bears’ brass. Given that this is what those outside of the organization are seeing, it’s magnified further.

As Sportsnaut’s Matt Johnson pointed out in a recent column, the issue has been Fields’ performance against pressure. Last season alone, he posted a 61.2 QB rating with a 42% completion when facing pressure. Going up against a clean pocket, Fields had a 96.2 QB rating with a 68.6% completion.

The combination of pressure and not being able to see open receivers is not a recipe for success in today’s NFL. Apparently, others are seeing that.

Justin Fields career stats: 60% completion, 4,539 yards, 26 TD, 24 INT, 78.8 QB rating

NFL: Chicago Bears at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports

Through two games this season, Fields ranks 18th in passing yards, 26th in completion percentage, 22nd in average yards per pass and 26th in quarterback rating. These numbers do not inspire confidence that the former Ohio State standout is going to somehow turn things around.

As another NFL executive put it, “everyone’s gonna play him the same—keep him in the pocket and make him feel like the rush is closing. And then his eyes will come down.” Ouch!

Chicago now must contend with Patrick Mahomes and the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs on the road this coming week. A loss here would move the team to 0-3 on the season, pretty much eliminating it from playoff contention. Only one team since 2002 has gone on to make the postseason after starting 0-3.

Related: Ranking Justin Fields among the NFL’s 32 starting quarterbacks

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