Not much has gone right for the Chicago Bears in 2022 (unless you believe they were tanking for a top pick). The lone bright spot has been the development of quarterback Justin Fields.
While his passing stats are still wallowing in ‘backup quarterback’ territory, watching his film is a delight. People who have played football at the highest levels like Kurt Warner, Trent Dilfer, and J.T. O’Sullivan have lauded his growth as a passer all season long. He’s trending in the right direction and seems primed to take the kind of third-year leap that Josh Allen, Jalen Hurts, and Tua Tagovailoa did once their team gave them a good offensive line and weapons at wide receiver.
But carrying the franchise on his back week after week has taken a toll, and Fields is clearly not at 100%. He looked sluggish in Week 17 against the Detroit Lions. Even as he had (another!) 60-yard run, he didn’t seem to have the same burst we’ve seen in the past, getting tackled at the five instead of taking it to the paint. He took seven sacks and became the most-sacked quarterback in franchise history, as well.