Sometimes it takes a while for a player to show he has that coveted it-factor. Those intangibles, those glimpses of something special. If it’s supposed to take a long time, no one told the Bears or Justin Fields. But then again, he was probably never going to be like the other guys.
Almost two weeks into his first NFL training camp, Fields is already turning heads. One Bears player, Jimmy Graham, did not hold back high praise when asked about his initial impressions of the 22-year-old. In a post-practice press conference on Thursday, the veteran tight end couldn’t stop glowing about the future of Chicago’s franchise under the stead of its new quarterback.
“I love the kid. He sits beside me in the locker room and man, he wants to be good and he wants to be great. He puts in the work. The guy can really throw the ball. That’s been impressive, to see his arm strength. At some point, I got to get him matched up with that guy up there in Seattle. Especially with the ability to make plays while you’re running. It’s been impressive to see him so young, so focused, and I can tell it definitely reminds me a lot of Russell Wilson.”
In most cases, you could and should probably take training camp reviews of performance and preparation with a grain of salt. That’s especially so with most of the Bears roster and quarterbacks, seeing as how most of them have never played with one worth writing home about. But given Graham’s background as someone who has caught touchdowns from three separate Hall of Fame quarterbacks in New Orleans, Seattle, and Green Bay, his opinion holds a lot more weight. It means a lot that Graham felt the need to insert a current superstar quarterback in the prime of his career and compare him to Fields. That isn’t something anyone states about a young player with a few weeks of practice under his belt.
If someone of Graham’s track record feels that way about the former Ohio State phenom, one can only imagine how the rest of Halas Hall is beaming from ear to ear about him. While he’ll still have to obviously prove himself come game action, it doesn’t seem like anyone who comes into contact with Fields is going to stop praising him any time soon.