There was one team Justin Fields wanted to play for more than any other

Justin Fields
Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

From the moment the Chicago Bears locked in the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, the Justin Fields trade rumors began. But at that time, there were several teams in need of a new starting quarterback, so it seemed like the Bears would have no issue sending their former 11th-overall pick to a team in need.

Yet, as the offseason went along, with free agency causing several players to change teams, the QB vacancies began to dwindle, leaving the Bears with very few options remaining for their former first-round pick.

We know now that the Pittsburgh Steelers stepped up to the plate, executing a trade for Fields by shipping out a 2025 sixth-round pick that has the potential to upgrade to a fourth-round selection if he plays in 51% or more snaps in 2024. But there were also other teams interested, and the Bears even rejected a better offer for Fields than what Pittsburgh delivered.

Why would Chicago do that? It may have been to do right by their former starting QB, sending him to a destination he wanted to be in.

According to NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport, there were at least four other teams who inquired about trading for Fields. Yet, his representatives requested that he not be sent to any of them.

Instead, Fields reportedly wanted to land with the Steelers, where he’d get to be coached by Mike Tomlin, and developed by offensive coordinator Arthur Smith. Unlike Kenny Pickett, he didn’t care that Russell Wilson was entrenched as the starting quarterback in Pittsburgh.

So, Chicago did what Fields asked for, and traded him to the Steelers, even if it wasn’t their best offer. It may not have been what’s best for the team, but general manager Ryan Poles did what Fields wanted most, and that could earn the Bears respect from other players around the league.

Related: Updated 2024 NFL Mock Draft after free agency’s first wave

Mentioned in this article:

More About: