Position coach: Comparing Mitch Trubisky to other QBs ‘has never been constructive’
The Bears traded up to draft Trubisky No. 2 overall in 2017. The Chiefs took Patrick Mahomes 10th and the Texans selected Deshaun Watson 12th in the same draft. Mahomes, the 2018 NFL MVP, is second in the league in passer rating; Watson is fourth.
Two days after Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes dueled with Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson on national television, Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky’s position coach said the team sees no benefit to comparing him to the two.
The Bears, of course, traded up to draft Trubisky No. 2 overall in 2017. The Chiefs took Mahomes 10th and the Texans selected Watson 12th in the same draft. Mahomes, the NFL’s most valuable player last season, is second in the league in passer rating; Watson is fourth.
‘‘You can start looking at quarterbacks drafted in the same class, the class below you, the class after you, and you’re like, ‘Oh, this guy’s here,’ ’’ Bears quarterbacks coach Dave Ragone said Tuesday. ‘‘I’ve been around all different quarterback rooms. I’ve yet to see that help any quarterback, to start to get into the comparison game: ‘Well, this guy threw for four touchdowns last week. I need to throw for . . . ’’
‘‘I’ve never seen that work.’’
Peyton Manning never let himself worry about such comparisons, Ragone said. Of course, the future Hall of Famer was compared to bust Ryan Leaf, who was drafted one spot later.
‘‘Trust me, I get how that can be a natural comparison to people outside this building,’’ Ragone said. ‘‘I’m not saying that’s not legitimate, guys comparing. . . . We need from Mitchell, just like every player, we need him to execute the game plan, the fundamentals, the way we want him to at a high level.
‘‘And once you become consistent at doing that — there is no magic timetable on that — then all of a sudden all of the other things kind of take care of themselves in terms of, ‘How’s this guy doing compared to . . . ?’ Because it doesn’t matter. Getting into the other parts of it has never been constructive. Ever.’’
The best players, he said, compare themselves to themselves.
‘‘It’s not to prove anybody wrong; it’s to prove yourself right,’’ Ragone said. ‘‘That you are ready to execute the game plan, you are ready to coach this week. It’s not the other way, when you’re trying to prove the naysayers wrong.’’
Trubisky can’t do that until he takes the field again. He rehabbed his left shoulder at Halas Hall during the bye week with the hope of returning Sunday against the Saints.
‘‘I just knew in my mind that he was going to do whatever it takes,’’ Ragone said.
When Trubisky does return, Ragone said the coaching staff won’t limit him.
‘‘The instincts part of it is pretty cut-and-dried,’’ he said. ‘‘I tell him this, and coach [Nagy] tells him the same thing: ‘That’s part of who you are.’ I’m not going to coach that out of him.
‘‘When he is available to play, he’s going to go out there and play as if he’s 100 percent ready to go and there’s no mental or physical holdbacks or restrictions. I don’t think you can play the position if you’re thinking about either one of those.’’
Ragone said Trubisky, who has played three games and six snaps this season, has too small a sample size to judge yet. His last full game — in which he posted a 116.5 passer rating against the woeful Redskins — was his best of the season.
‘‘He is, in my opinion, pointing in the right direction,’’ Ragone said.
Some of his reasoning has nothing to do with Trubisky’s statistics.
‘‘From how he handles things to how he handles the game plan coming in this week to how he took the field [Monday] after an injury in which he’s been out two weeks . . . I’m seeing a guy growing up.
‘‘Those things, are they measured in quarterback rating? I don’t know. Obviously, the end goal is for a high, successful production. That’s everybody’s goal.’’
The outside world will be watching. And comparing.