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Chicago’s QB Problem: Lack of Development? Lack of Investment? Or Both?

| April 1st, 2024

Deep in the NFL Offseason, sometimes all we’re left with to talk about is drama. It doesn’t always have to be interesting, either — nearly anyone can go viral for saying something inflammatory, be they an ESPN Analyst, a former NFL Quarterback, or even just a fan with a take that’s truly out of left field.

Yesterday saw a perfect example of that juicy juicy drama catch fire all over the Chicago sect of Twitter — JT O’Sullivan, the analyst that runs the YouTube Channel The QB School, had this to say about Chicago in relation to Caleb Williams:

“Is it the ideal situation for him to go where he’s going to go? I mean… absolutely not…. the track record is the track record. If I could pick where he would go… that’s just not what I would want for him”

Obviously I’m cherry-picking one take to talk about amidst a long, well-done podcast by Bootleg Football, but I’d like to talk about it nevertheless — I think this take is tired, largely because I think Chicago’s ‘Track Record’ has become overblown over time.

Let’s re-contextualize the Bears’ five most recent 1st round Quarterback selections, stretching past the last 37 years — maybe you’ll see the same trend I do:

  • 1987 — Jim Harbaugh | Pick #26 | QB4 in his class
  • 1999 — Cade McNown | Pick #12 | QB5
  • 2003 — Rex Grossman | Pick #22 | QB4
  • 2017 — Mitchell Trubisky | Pick #2 (Trade Up) | QB1
  • 2021 — Justin Fields | Pick #11 (Trade Up) | QB4

The picks have yielded poor results, no doubt. But should we be shocked that Chicago’s consistent inability to select a better option than the 4th/5th best QB in a draft class might be just as large a problem as their inability to surround those QBs with talent?

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