Mitchell Trubisky - Signed through 2020 - A year ago we all hoped Trubisky would build off the uneven rookie season that he spent under the leadership of Dowell Loggains and John Fox, and show more “franchise quarterback” traits with head coach Matt Nagy guiding his career. After improving his numbers across the board in the 2018 regular season, throwing for 300 yards in a wild card game while leading his team down for the go-ahead TD in the fourth quarter AND getting his team in position to win with a last second field goal (Double Damn!), and by being a participant in the Pro Bowl, I think we’ve seen him grow as a player.
I can’t wait to see his growth in 2019 now that he has a full year in the offensive system.
Chase Daniel - Signed through 2019 - Daniel did exactly what he needed to do when he was forced into action in 2018. He kept the offense running and gave the Bears a chance to win. Chicago went 1-1 in his two starts, but he played decent football and his knowledge of the offense allowed Nagy to do what he wants to do with him in the game. But more importantly, his presence on the team helped with the offensive install and with Trubisky’s development.
Daniel will be one of the highest paid backups in the NFL in 2019 at $6 million, but with Trubisky still on his rookie deal the Bears are in the bottom half of the league in QB cap space allocation.
Tyler Bray - Free Agent - Bray spent a little time on the 53-man roster, but the majority of his time was spent on the practice squad. He’s been bouncing around the NFL since 2014 and I believe he may finally be out of practice squad eligibility. I don’t expect the Bears to carry three QBs in 2019, so I think Bray is going to be employed somewhere else next year.
2019 OUTLOOK - The Bears will need a practice squad QB for emergency purposes and getting one, if not two, undrafted free agents in camp seems like a likely scenario. They’ll need a couple camp arms behind Trubisky and Daniel, so they may go the rookie route for one and pair him with an unsigned Bray-like youngster for the other.
I asked our very own Jacob Infante his thoughts on a late round or UDFA type of quarterback that could be a guy the Bears like, and he mentioned Easton Stick of North Dakota State, who competed in the East-West Shrine game last week. He completed 5 of 8 passes for 51 yards in that game to cap off a stellar career with the Bison where he led them to two consecutive FCS Championships.
Here’s what Jacob had to say about Stick.
Stick won’t be more than a late Day 3 pick, but I genuinely think that he will be able to develop into a high-quality backup quarterback. The six-foot-one, 219-pounder is on the smaller side, but he has plenty to like about his game. He is a very good athlete who can pick up yards with his feet and make defenders miss. His throws have good velocity behind them, and he is good at fitting passes in tight windows. Stick has flashed the ability to throw with great ball placement, though some consistency in that regard would help out a lot. His throwing motion is a bit obtuse, and he’s mostly a one-read quarterback who forces a lot of throws. With some work with a NFL coaching staff, though, I believe that Stick can be a valuable second-stringer at the next level.
What do you guys think the Bears will do behind Trubiksy and Daniel?