Bears Fans Get Nick Foles' Sized Kick in the Gut
The Bears quarterback situation remains one of the most intriguing offseason storylines. They've been connected in trade rumors with the two biggest quarterbacks who may or may not be on the market, Deshaun Watson and Russell Wilson. They are also expected to let Mitch Trubisky walk in free agency four years after moving up to select him with the No. 2 overall pick.
Trading for the former two seems like a pipe dream at this point, and with the team in win-now mode and not in a position to draft an elite quarterback prospect, the Bears are left with the possibility (likelihood?) of starting Nick Foles in 2021. That's just about the last thing Bears fans want to hear right now. Not when they have dreams of Watson and Wilson running through their heads.
Foles was uninspiring at best in 2020, averaging a hair over 205 passing yards per game and finishing with 10 touchdown passes against 8 interceptions. The Bears went 2-5 in his seven starts. Foles got hurt and was replaced by Trubisky, who outplayed Foles, which says a lot about how bad Foles was. Foles also created a bit of controversy when he called out Bears coach Matt Nagy's play-calling to ESPN analyst Brian Griese.
Bears GM Ryan Pace and Nagy are both on the hot seat after two straight years missing the postseason. If they can't get Chicago back into the playoffs in 2021, Pace and Nagy will both likely be fired. That's why the Bears came into this offseason knowing they had to upgrade the quarterback position.
They were part of the Carson Wentz trade rumors, but he was ultimately sent to the Colts. Watson and Wilson both reportedly said they would accept a trade to the Bears, but both the Texans and Seahawks don't want to trade their franchise quarterbacks for obvious reasons. That leaves the Bears in a position where they can sign a veteran free agent like Jacoby Brissett or Ryan Fitzpatrick and/or roll with Foles. The latter seems like the worst option.
With the exception of one season with the Eagles in 2013 and then his two short stints replacing Carson Wentz in 2017 and 2018, Foles has been a sub-par quarterback. Over the last two seasons, he's accounted for 14 touchdowns against 10 interceptions and has had an average QBR of 39.4. His teams have gone 2-9 with him as a starter, though four of those losses came with a hapless Jaguars team in 2019. Regardless, it's become clear Foles is not a quarterback you can rely on. He can get hot at times but is inconsistent overall.
The Bears have a roster capable of making the playoffs. They've just been held back by subpar quarterback play the last two seasons. Trading for a top-notch quarterback might prove impossible and drafting one of the elite prospects seems like a fruitless venture for them too. But the Bears can't stick with Foles alone. If they do, Bears fans should brace for another disappointing season.