Bears QB Justin Fields, complete with photographic brief, debuts as a starter in week 3

Quincy Avery has worked with Justin Fields since the quarterback was in high school. And when asked how ready the new Bears starter is for his debut, what comes to mind isn’t something on the football field.

“In Grade 11 we get this Elite 11 playbook full of NFL concepts,” recalled Avery, the well-regarded QB coach who runs QB Takeover. “And Justin basically taught it to himself. A week and a half later, he had memorized it from cover to cover and could handle things both ways. He could reverse the training. knew the protections for each concept… and I’ve never seen someone so young can do that. And he just elevated that. “

Thanks to a bone contusion suffered by starter Andy Dalton, the highly prized first-round rookie – for which Chicago traded until No.11 – will begin. Coach Matt Nagy has made it clear that it’s Dalton’s job when he’s healthy. And he wouldn’t get into what he called “the simulation game”.

“Justin is worried about trying to help us beat Cleveland,” Nagy said earlier this week. “I don’t really want to go there other than just saying when Andy is healthy he’s our starter.”

If Fields sheds light on the Browns’ defense today, the questions will persist. A good problem to have, for sure. It’s not a total start, as Fields played snaps in each of the first two games. A source also described several “wow” moments in practice. But his first start is remarkable, and Fields said, “I know I was made for this.”

Quincy, who knows Fields as well as anyone, believes him.

“I think mentally Justin is as ready as any rookie can be,” Avery said. “He has a really good understanding of offense and can handle as well as anyone. Really excited about him as a starting QB.”

Fields is more mobile than Dalton, and it would make sense for this week’s offense to allow him to move a bit. That’s what Avery wants to see. To give Fields the opportunity to get out of tackles and make a play.

“We already know Justin is one of the most athletic people on the court every time he walks on it,” Avery said. “Outside of the pocket he can really focus on defense. That’s what really separates him, being able to get these explosive plays, these dynamic plays.”

As for advice, Fields doesn’t need much.

“It’s really fair, just be yourself,” Avery said. “I have no doubt he did everything he needed to do. He’s going to do a fantastic job.”

Michael E. Marquez