Practice Notebook (8/21/20)

| August 21st, 2020

With a week of practices almost in the books, I’ve actually started doing some “work” around here again, texting folks around the club to find out what’s happening. Here are some of their thoughts, and a lot of mine, in these early days.

The Lady’s Got Potential

Several people around practices have noted improvements in Mitch Trubisky’s footwork but let’s hit the breaks a bit. Does anybody care what a quarterback’s mechanics look like in practice sessions? Mitch can set his feet and throw at Halas Hall, I’ve no doubt about that. But can he set his feet and throw when those Smith boys from Green Bay are coming around the edge? If his mechanics are improved it’s undoubtedly a good thing. But nobody will know how improved until they start keeping score.

A New Argentina

Jimmy Graham was the best player on the practice field this week. Cole Kmet made his presence known immediately. There’s no reason to get overly excited about practices but it sure seems like the most improved position on the 2020 Bears will be tight end. Kmet is a stud. His early success won’t surprise me at all. Graham? As someone deep inside the organization told me this spring, “Ryan believes Jimmy is going to have a big season in this offense. So does Jimmy.” Soon, there might be some other believers around the league.

[Side note: I haven’t played fantasy football since Shaun Alexander was in the league but Jimmy Graham is someone I’d be looking at were I to play this season.]

The Art of the Possible

Note from a scout friend: “I think Tulane kid.. Mooney is going to be really good.“

Darnell Mooney can fly and the Bears think they stole a real player in the fifth round. Will he have major impact this season? Well, the truth is he doesn’t have to. With Teddy Ginn on the roster, the rookie can grow into the season and watched a seasoned speedster go about his work.

But without preseason tape or inter-team scrimmages, there won’t be much tape on Mooney for the Lions to study at the start of the year. One wonders if offenses around the league won’t have an advantage on defenses when it comes to unknown commodities like him.

Another Suitcase in Another Hall

Hello and Goodbye

Robert Quinn was the most important player signed by the Chicago Bears this off-season. So where is he?

From Patrick Finley in the Sun-Times:

“Rob’s on his own program a little bit,” outside linebackers coach Ted Monachino said. “He’s got his own set of requirements that we’ve got to get done with Rob first, and he is exactly where he needs to be. He’s had a few things come up and based on those things, we’ve got to continue to bring him along slowly. He’s in the ramping-up phase.”

That’s not particularly assuring, given that the season opener is 3½ weeks away. Getting him ready has become a priority.

“What we need to see from Rob before [Sept.] 13 is a fully healthy Robert Quinn that is ready to pop out of his skin on game day,” Monachino said. “We’re all building in that direction right now, from the head coach all the way through me.”

Quinn’s responsibilities this season are simple: hit quarterbacks. There’s no reason for actual concern until a week into September.

You Must Love Me

Texted a media member when they thought the QB decision would be made? The guess? September 6th.

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