Bears' Matt Nagy on Dalton Starting over Fields: 'We're Going to Stick to This Plan'

Jenna CiccotelliCorrespondent IIJune 15, 2021

Chicago Bears quarterback Andy Dalton throws a ball during NFL football practice in Lake Forest, Ill., Wednesday, June 9, 2021. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh

When the Chicago Bears signed Andy Dalton in March, they alerted social media that their "QB1" had arrived.

Even after drafting Justin Fields at No. 11 overall, head coach Matt Nagy has maintained that stance, and in an appearance on The Cris Collinsworth Podcast featuring Richard Sherman, Nagy said that's still the case.

"No. I mean Andy is our starter," Nagy said. "Again I can't predict anything. You know how it goes. There's so many things that can happen between today and Week 1. But Andy is our starter and Justin is our No. 2 and we're going to stick to this plan."

The Bears moved on from Mitchell Trubisky, their No. 2 overall pick in 2017. Signing Dalton, a three-time Pro Bowler who stepped back into the spotlight when Dak Prescott suffered a season-ending ankle injury in Week 5, was enough to plug the hole.

Dalton finished 2020 with 2,170 yards, 14 touchdowns and eight interceptions, going 4-5 through nine starts for the Cowboys. 

But at the draft, Fields brought a glimmer of hope to Chicago.

Fields finished the 2020 campaign with 2,100 yards and 22 touchdowns through eight games for Ohio State a year after appearing in 14 games and throwing for 3,273 yards and 41 touchdowns.

Reporters seemed impressed with Fields during OTAs: 

Brad Biggs @BradBiggs

Media viewing for #Bears OTA has concluded. Justin Fields with a couple nifty passes and one nice bomb. Struggled with center/QB exchanges. Andy Dalton picked off 3x total in 7-on-7 and team. pic.twitter.com/Ngi6tuYJ32

Zack Pearson @Zack_Pearson

Can’t go into a lot of detail. But from what I saw, it was a very good day for rookie QB Justin Fields today. #Bears

Minicamp began Tuesday and will run through Thursday before training camp later this summer. If nothing changes in terms of Nagy's stance, it'll be Dalton who gets the start against Matthew Stafford and the Los Angeles Rams in Week 1.