Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Poles is not one to divulge much information.
It is not as though he shies from meeting the media as his predecessor often did. But Poles has a message when he speaks and he sticks to it. So it’s notable when he makes appearances such as during the preseason finale against the Buffalo Bills and lays out just what he wants to see from third-year quarterback Justin Fields this coming season.
But, while Poles knows what he wants to see from Fields, he’s letting head coach Matt Eberflus offensive coordinator Luke Getsy, and quarterbacks coach Andrew Janocko do their jobs.
“I trust in Luke and Andrew Janocko and in Flus right now,” Poles said on August 30. “He spends most of his time with the coaches, and they’ve put their plan together and their goal in terms of getting better and taking that next step.”
Poles detailed what that next step looked like during the loss to the Bills.
Ryan Poles Trusts Bears Coaches to Develop Justin Fields
Bears GM Ryan Poles Wants ‘Poise’ From Justin Fields
“I think what we’re looking for now, and we’ve seen this in practice and some of the games, is just that poise and letting the game kind of slow down so he can make really good decisions, and create explosive plays with his arms,” Poles said on August 25. “If we can get both of those things — him being a better passer as well as a runner — that’s gonna create problems for the defense.”
JUSTIN. FREAKING. FIELDS.
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) November 6, 2022
Again, though, Poles is letting the coaching staff – and Fields himself – guide that process, not him.
“As a staff, we talk about what we need to see,” said Poles on Wednesday. “But they’ve had those conversations, and he kind of knows what’s expected of him. And, really, he’s a goal-oriented guy, and he’s competitive. I’m sure his stuff is more aggressive than what ours is, which is good. That’s what you want your guys to be like.”
Fields notably said the would become the Bears’ first 4,000-yard passer this season.
Justin Fields Set Up for Success
Poles has seemingly set him up for success. After stripping the roster last offseason, he added Chase Claypool at the trade deadline, then proceeded to add wide receiver DJ Moore, tight end Robert Tonyan, guard Nate Davis, and more to a moribund offense.
He noted that quarterbacks need weapons to succeed.
“You gotta add playmakers, and then you’ve gotta give these guys time to grow,” Poles said during the preseason finale. “It takes time to adapt … So, as we continue to improve our roster around him, we expect him to take that next step as well.”
Poles noted Fields’ anticipation and trust in his playmakers has improved from last season.
The Bears surely want to find out once a for all just what they have in Fields this season. He is heading into the third year of his rookie contract and will be extension-eligible next offseason.
Chicago also has the ammunition to make just about any move they’d like in the 2024 draft.