Justin Fields is officially an NFL starting quarterback.
After starting the Chicago Bears’ past two games while Andy Dalton was sidelined by a bone bruise in his knee, Fields will now remain the Bears’ starting quarterback going forward, Bears head coach Matt Nagy announced Wednesday.
“He's done everything to show us that he's ready for this opportunity,” Nagy said Wednesday during a press conference.
Nagy's decision to begin the season with Dalton starting at quarterback drew the ire of many Bears fans, especially after they suffered a 34-14 loss with Dalton at the helm in their season opener against the Los Angeles Rams. After Fields replaced Dalton in the Bears' second game of the season against the Cincinnati Bengals, which they won 20-17, he had some clear growing pains in his first start against the Cleveland Browns, as he completed just six of 20 passing attempts and was sacked nine times in a 26-6 loss.
On Sunday, however, Fields won his first game as a starting quarterback as he completed 11 of 17 passing attempts for 209 yards, throwing one interception but also making several excellent downfield throws, to lead the Bears to a 24-14 win. That was enough for Nagy, who up until Wednesday had repeatedly insisted that Dalton remained the Bears’ starting quarterback, to finally commit to their first-round pick as their QB1.
Fields told reporters that because he had already been starting for the last two weeks, Wednesday's news wouldn't change his routine – and he even declined a request from his parents to go out for a celebratory dinner, choosing to keep his focus on preparing for this week's game against the Las Vegas Raiders.
Justin Fields told reporters his parents wanted to go out last night to celebrate the news. He told them no.— Kimberley A. Martin (@ByKimberleyA) October 6, 2021
His parents went out. Justin stayed home with his dog, Uno, and watched film. #bears
Through three games, Fields has completed 25 of 52 passing attempts for 347 yards and two interceptions. He hasn't yet thrown his first passing touchdown, but has rushed for 55 yards and a touchdown.