Nagy promised Dalton the starting gig to persuade the veteran quarterback to sign with Chicago earlier this year. He’s holding true to the promise, but is still leaving the door open for rookie quarterback Justin Fields to replace him.
So what will it take for Fields to replace Dalton as the starter? Nagy told reporters on Tuesday that he’ll measure Dalton by how he performs and if he can win games. So if Dalton plays poorly on an individual level and the Bears are losing games Fields will get the start.
Don’t expect this to be the last time Nagy discusses his team’s quarterback battle.
Matt Nagy just confirmed that Andy Dalton’s performance will be a big factor in when Justin Fields plays.
“Performance and wins.”
Fields is close. #Bears are committed to giving Dalton a chance to prove himself as the starter in the regular season.
— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) August 24, 2021
We’ll learn a ton about what Andy Dalton is capable of right at the start of the 2021 regular season. The Bears begin the year with a road trip to Los Angeles to take on the Rams, who should have one of the best defenses in the NFL. If Dalton plays poorly, Justin Fields could play as soon as Week 2.
The last thing the Bears should do is throw Fields right into the fire against the Rams. Instead, they could wait until Week 2 when they play the Cincinnati Bengals, or even Week 4 when they take on the Detroit Lions.
This will probably ultimately come down to public pressure. If Dalton plays poorly, fans will blast Nagy for his decision, which will then probably prompt a quarterback change.
It’s going to be an interesting season in Chicago.