Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields expressed frustration about the team's inability to take the next step following Thursday night's 12-7 loss to the Washington Commanders.
"We always get told that 'we're almost there, we're almost there,'" Fields told reporters. "Me, personally, I'm tired of being almost there. I'm tired of being just this close. I feel like I've been hearing it for so long now. At the end of the day, all you can do is get back to work. That's the only reaction you have. You live and you learn. Just get back next week and keep going, keep getting better."
The Bears came up just short Thursday as their eight-play, 61-yard final drive stalled out at the Commanders' 4-yard line. The third straight one-score loss dropped their record to 2-4.
Fields' development is a point of contention as the Bears attempt to determine the best path forward amid another season that's slipping away.
The 2021 first-round pick's stats across his first 18 NFL appearances are underwhelming: 57.7 percent completion rate for 2,739 yards with 11 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. He's added 702 rushing yards and three scores on the ground.
On Thursday, he missed several throws that must be completed if Chicago's offense is going to reach another level, including a wide-open touchdown pass to tight end Ryan Griffin in the second quarter. The Bears failed to score on the drive.
"When the play is there, make it," Fields said. "Plain and simple. There is no logistics. It's not complicated. It's when you have that opportunity, finish. It's that simple. We just didn't do that tonight. You don't have to make it harder than it is, pitch and catch."
The defense of the 23-year-old Ohio State product begins with the lack of pass-catching talent around him, including the absence of a true No. 1 wide receiver. Darnell Mooney, Dante Pettis and Equanimeous St. Brown are the team's most targeted wideouts.
If you look at quarterbacks who've made a leap in recent years, it's often linked to the front office bringing in a top target, whether it's the Buffalo Bills acquiring Stefon Diggs for Josh Allen or the Miami Dolphins adding Tyreek Hill for Tua Tagovailoa.
Without a blockbuster trade ahead of the Nov. 1 deadline, that type of move will have to wait until the offseason, so Fields needs to work with the existing group for now.
Bears head coach Matt Eberflus said the staff will use the next 10 days off to see what type of adjustments, including possible offensive line changes, can be made to jump-start the unit.
"We're going to reassess everything," Eberflus said. "Everything from scheme to players to everything. We're going to do a good job of that here coming up. And we're going to do a good job of really getting it to the players. If it might be a lineup change or might be technique, fundamentals, all that, scheme, how we're running certain plays, who we're getting the ball to, what we're doing well, what we need to improve on."
Fields and Co. return to action Oct. 24 for a Week 7 road trip to face the New England Patriots on Monday Night Football.