Justin Fields’ relationship with veteran quarterbacks as rookie was ‘toxic as hell,’ report says

May 15, 2024
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Advice from a Super Bowl-winning quarterback? Apparently, Justin Fields wanted no part.

The Chicago Bears selected Fields with the 11th pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, trading up from 20 to do so.

Fields joined a quarterback room that had veteran presence in Andy Dalton and Nick Foles. Dalton had been a 10-year starter, while Foles was a few years removed from an incredible run that won the Philadelphia Eagles their first Super Bowl title.

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Bears 2021 QBs

Nick Foles #9 and Andy Dalton #14 of the Chicago Bears watch Justin Fields #1 throw a pass during training camp at Halas Hall on July 29, 2021 in Lake Forest, Illinois.  (Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)

However, according to Tyler Dunne’s “Go Long” Substack, Fields’ relationship with both of them was “toxic as hell.”

But, Fields’ dynamic with Foles was the worst.

“There were several arguments amongst the QBs. Once, per one source, Foles was trying to teach something to Fields in the QB room and — upon turning toward the rookie — Foles realized Fields wasn’t even paying attention. His head was down. At that point, Foles was done trying to play mentor. The two could not stand each other,” Dunne wrote.

Dunne added, “They never were together. It was always Andy and Nick walking side by side and Justin always 15 yards behind them.”

Bears quarterbacks during game

Chicago Bears quarterbacks Justin Fields (1), Nick Foles (9), Andy Dalton (14) and quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo look on during a preseason game between the Chicago Bears and the Buffalo Bills on August 21, 2021 at Soldier Field in Chicago, IL. (Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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Former director of player personnel Josh Lucas said back in February similar sentiments.

“Justin wasn’t great his rookie year. We thought having two vets with him would really help him with Andy and Nick and that was not cohesive at all,” Lucas said. “The part I kinda liked about it was Justin knew he was the best and should be out there. 

“But you don’t like about it is there’s a teachable moment in every point of practices. There’s teachable moments in the building during the day, how you carry yourself as a quarterback. There are teachable moments at press conferences. There’s teachable moments every snap on Sunday. When you’ve got two guys that have won as much as Nick and seen as much as Andy, and you don’t take that information in, because you’re a little standoffish and a little abrasive, you’re wasting that opportunity.”

Foles, Dalton, and Fields

Chicago Bears quarterback Andy Dalton (center) and quarterback Nick Foles (9) watch as quarterback Justin Fields (left) drops back to pass during a Chicago Bears training camp session at Halas Hall. (Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports)

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Fields took over as the starter in Week 3 of his rookie season, but when the Bears got the No. 1 pick this year, the writing was on the wall.

Chicago traded Fields to the Pittsburgh Steelers (who had just signed Russell Wilson) and then selected Caleb Williams.

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