Analysis Bears Editorials

Trubisky Missed Too Many Open Receivers Against the Cardinals

The Chicago Bears offense had an ugly performance against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. It starts from issues with both Matt Nagy and Mitch Trubisky.

The Chicago Bears somehow found a way to beat the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday afternoon. The offense was downright ugly. They finished with 16 points, 316 total yards and one touchdown as a unit.

That’s simply not good enough. Especially, with a defense as talented as the one the Bears currently have.

Despite the overall ugly performance, the Bears offense did get the ground game going against the Cardinals. Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen rushed for a combined 122 yards. They also dominated time of possession 36:21 to 23:39

Well, that was pretty much it for the good.

Now, the bad: the Bears went 5-14 (36%) on third downs, they went 1-3 in the red zone and turned the ball not once, but twice. As always, this weeks breakdown of the offense will begin with the quarterback, Mitch Trubisky.

Trubisky struggles

For the third consecutive game, Trubisky struggled at times to do much of anything that was positive in terms of his development. He completed 24-35 passes for 220 yards, an interception, and fumble. For the second week in a row, Trubisky turned the ball over twice.

He did finish with better numbers than Cardinals QB Sam Bradford, who went 13-19 for 157 yards two touchdowns and three interceptions. Sunday’s game in the desert was not a good one for quarterbacks.

I counted five or six overthrows on the day for Trubisky who was inaccurate downfield once again. That’s been the book on him so far in his young NFL career – accurate short, not so much deep.

This should have been a touchdown to Taylor Gabriel.

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The next thing that made me cringe when rewatching Trubisky was his inability once again to the read the defense. Take a look at the picture below.

Clearly, the Cardinals are bringing pressure with at least six or seven players. So, that should tell Trubisky he will need to get rid of the ball quickly. He should know who his security blanket is before the ball is snapped.

On this play, that was Cohen, who was wide open in the flat.

Why Trubisky didn’t just toss it to Cohen is beyond me. It’s either a lack of focus or somehow he didn’t see the pressure coming. If that doesn’t describe an inexperienced QB I don’t know what does.

These are things Trubisky will have to improve on if he’s going to be a franchise QB one day.

Positive Trubisky plays

Ok, let’s try and be positive, which may be impossible after watching Trubisky on Sunday.

In the video below, we see Trubisky go through his progressions and makes a beautiful throw to Trey Burton. With time, this is hopefully what Trubisky can do on a more consistent basis. Everything about the play was perfect.

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On the next play, Trubisky makes another strong read and throw to WR Allen Robinson on the sideline.

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Again, that was picture perfect. Trubisky goes throw his progressions and makes an accurate throw to Robinson. These plays are proof that Trubisky’s issues are correctable. The problem is this kind of progress can’t be rushed.

Listen to “Ep. 4 – Week 3, First Place Chicago Bears” on Spreaker.

Playcalling/Decision making  

The playcalling by head coach Matt Nagy on Sunday was subpar. Getting the run game involved was a fantastic move by him and the rest of his staff, but everything else was either really good or just bad.

In the red zone, Nagy needs to stop getting so cute. They tried throwing a few times down there, instead of running Howard. When they scored their only red zone touchdown on Sunday, guess who scored? That’s right, Mr. Jordan Howard.

Like Trubisky, Nagy is developing as a play caller and head coach. That was obvious on Sunday when he failed to make up his mind when it came down to taking the points or going for it on fourth down.

Say what you want about Nagy, but he is honest.

“I’m growing right now with decision making. … These are all situations for me [where] I’m learning as I go. And it’s going to make me better.”

Eventually, the offense will get it, but it’s important to remember that it will be a process. In other words, it may take some time. For now, the Bears will continue to rely on their strongest unit – the defense.

“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that we’re winning games because of our defense.” 

Follow Nick on Twitter–Featured Photo Credit: Armando L. Sanchez / Chicago Tribune

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Nick is the editor-in-chief at & owner of He also is a fantasy sports junkie, DFS player, and prop play guru. He considers himself a football expert but dabbles in a bit of everything, including trying to sell his own "soul" on eBay. For more fun, follow him on Twitter @PetroTLS. 

7 comments on “Trubisky Missed Too Many Open Receivers Against the Cardinals

  1. Trubisky looked a bit like a scared kid back there at times

  2. Run the ball Run the ball and Run play action where Mitch is strong at. Nagy needs to make him comfortable as possible..This off season MIT h hang out with Drew Bree’s …Tom Brady get sum veteran advice not Goff advice

  3. One more thing …Nagy get the plays in early so Mitch has time to Read defenses then maybe he can audible or see the pressure better but besides that let’s go Bears nation

  4. Sick of all the excuses and waiting for trubisky to get his s&%t together while other rookie and second year qb’s are playing well. This guy is so far a huge bust. He is so far from being worthy of a 2nd round move up to get him and give away the farm overall pick. Mitch is Pace’s albatross. He gives you tantalizing glimpses of greatness followed by happy feet and horrible decisions. Kind of reminds me of another qb we had here and we certainly did not need a repeat of that.

  5. I hope Mitch is taking him self as the problem and not the receivers, running backs, Coaches, GM ect. The problem I see is Matt N. Keeps sticking up for Mitch Trubisky’s mistakes? He can only go so far with that. But maybe Mitch isn’t a very quick learner? And it may take some extra time that we don’t have? I just see Mitch getting to be cocky and is starting to look the part? Than almost focusing on football? That’s just me though. I hope he can turn the offense 360 around fast because were in a great position now, not later…

  6. Superior Maids

    Mitch has a lot of potential, but as we all know…its all about now…..bears have one of the best rosters in the league and at the moment Mitch is the weakest link. We all have to be patient with him, mistakes will happen, growing pains etc…there were a lot of missed throws and reads that he should have completed (no excuses), as long time bears fan I had much bigger expectation from Mitch in his second year. Lets not over react, this offense will take time to adjust and to be mastered but if we continue to have the same opinion after week 9 or so…we are in big trouble. Lets not panic and give Mitch support and time.

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