After a 3-7 start, don’t be surprised if the Chicago Bears move on from quarterback Justin Fields this offseason.
“Fields would become a trade candidate to teams that aren’t going to be in a position to land a top-two pick and/or don’t love the other QBs available in round 1,” ESPN’s Bill Barnwell wrote. “There won’t be a leaguewide clamor to acquire Fields, but his skill set and highlight reel will appeal to teams that think they can get more out of him with better offensive infrastructure than Chicago has sported.”
In three seasons with Chicago, the former first-round pick has a 6-25 starting record. He hasn’t developed into a consistent passer either, only completing 60.1 percent of his passes. He is an exceptional runner, though. In 2022, he finished seventh in the league in rushing yards (1,143).
Barnwell added the New York Jets dealt QB Sam Darnold to the Carolina Panthers for second-, fourth- and sixth-round picks in 2021, so the Bears “would probably net a similar return” for Fields.
If the Bears replace him with Williams, they’ll land one of the most highly touted prospects in recent memory. ESPN draft analyst Jordan Reid rated him as the top QB in the 2024 class.
“His arm strength, accuracy and improvisational skills have him sitting atop the QB rankings,” Reid wrote of the 2022 Heisman winner. “And scouts see him as one of the best prospects at the position of the past decade.”
Chicago only has a 1 percent chance to make the playoffs, per the New York Times simulator. Entering rebuild mode with a young QB and letting Fields reboot his career elsewhere seems the right move for the franchise.