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Justin Fields Assigns Blame For Passing Struggles

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Justin Fields needs to get better passing

Justin Fields knows he has work to do this offseason to get better. The Chicago Bears quarterback made the offense exciting this season. But he did it with his legs, not his arm.

The Bears brass has been open critics of Fields’ shortcomings in the passing game. General manager Ryan Poles said Fields needs to get better as a passer. And he’s absolutely right. According to Next Gen Stats, Fields is less than average throwing behind the line of scrimmage to his right side. He’s nearly 35 percent worse than the average NFL quarterback throwing to the middle of the flat.

Photo courtesy of Next Gen Stats.

Those numbers aren’t sustainable for Fields to be the Bears’ franchise quarterback. In Fields’ defense, his talent pool in 2022 wasn’t good. The Bears are expected to upgrade the offensive line and wide receiver units this offseason. Fields will have a better test in year three, working with better players and the same offensive coordinator two years in a row, to see if he can be successful in the passing game.

Fields points out what’s missing in his game

Justin Fields was a guest on the Rich Eisen Show Thursday. According to Matt Clapp, Fields said he knows he must improve in the short passing game. He said his deficiency in throwing it short is related to his mechanics. The Bears will look to fix his mechanics in the offseason.

It’ll be another offseason working on mechanics for Fields. Many analysts were hyped all last season with videos of Fields throwing during OTAs and training camp. They liked to point out how much his mechanics (smooth and faster release) had changed during the 2022 offseason, but there didn’t appear to be a huge difference on the field in the regular season.

Hopefully, offensive coordinator Luke Getsy can steer Justin Fields right during OTAs this year. Fields needs to hit short routs and running backs instead of taking hits and forcing throws, as he did in 2022. Fields likes to make big plays, but in the NFL, taking advantage of short-yardage situations on early downs on drives can set up big plays later in the game. That change is more of a mental leap than mechanical.


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