New Chicago Bears quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo spoke to the media via Zoom Wednesday, and he was full of bon mots and fun musings about his new team. DeFilippo, who interviewed for the Bears’ head coaching vacancy back in 2018, is now on the offensive staff of Matt Nagy, the man Chicago chose to run the show instead.
DeFilippo spent time as an offensive coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings and Jacksonville Jaguars, and he also served as the quarterbacks coach with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2017 when Nick Foles led the team to its only Super Bowl victory. He has been reunited with Foles in Chicago (he also worked with him last year in Jacksonville), and he will be working with fourth-year QB Mitchell Trubisky for the first time.
DeFilippo shared his thoughts on Trubisky, Foles and the team’s quarterback competition, among other things, and he had the media entertained from start to finish.
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Three Things a QB Needs: ‘Passion, Energy & Swagger’
DeFilippo said that he has spoken to Trubisky about what his strength and weaknesses are, noting they had a detailed discussion about footwork and consistency specifically. DeFilippo also stressed the importance of three traits every great quarterback must have: “Passion, energy,” and, as DeFilippo put it: “Swagger, baby.”
Bears quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo says he and Mitchell Trubisky have talked about his footwork, and keeping it consistent
— Mark Grote (@markgrotesports) June 17, 2020
John DeFilippo says you must have "Passion, energy, and swagger, baby."
— Mark Grote (@markgrotesports) June 17, 2020
Swagger is something the 2018 Bears had plenty of, but DeFilippo was quick to point out he doesn’t want a cocky QB. “It doesn’t mean that we go out and we’re cocky and arrogant. It doesn’t mean that at all. It just means that we have a swagger about ourselves that the only people that can beat us is if we beat ourselves.”
John DeFilippo is seeking 'swagger' in the Bears' quarterbacks.
"It doesn't mean that we go out and we're cocky and arrogant. It doesn't mean that at all. It just means that we have a swagger about ourselves that the only people that can beat us is if we beat ourselves."
— Chris Emma (@CEmma670) June 17, 2020
Can Mitch Trubisky Get That Swagger?
Trubisky had a solid campaign in 2018, and he certainly seemed to have some swagger in his step, particularly when he chose to tuck it and run. If Trubisky can not just work on his footwork and and consistency but improve them, he has an excellent chance at emerging as the team’s starting QB.
— FanCave (@fancaveblog) October 21, 2018
DeFilippo also stressed the importance of understanding scheme, which Trubisky has also struggled with in the past. One thing the fourth-year quarterback hasn’t struggled with yet? Hard work and dedication. There are myriad ‘ifs’ surrounding him, but Trubisky has always had the support of his teammates, and if he can put it all together on the field, he will finally be the guy Chicago hoped for when they selected him second overall in 2017.
He also said he told Trubisky to take a bit of a break in order to better recharge.
Because Mitch Trubisky was rehabbing his shoulder earlier this offseason, he was in the building a lot. John DeFilippo thought it was too much and told him: "You need to get away … you need to clear your mind for a couple weeks."
— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) June 17, 2020
In defining command for his QBs, DeFilippo stressed "having command of yourself with the quarterback lifestyle. … Living, breathing, eating, sleeping football."
Also stressed having command of scheme and having command of the team in some natural fashion.
— Dan Wiederer (@danwiederer) June 17, 2020
DeFilippo also had very flattering things to say about Foles, singling out his genuine personality. “When he asks you how your day is going, he literally means it,” DeFilippo said. “It comes across as genuine not only with players and coaches, but everyone in the building.”
Bears QB coach John DeFilippo on Nick Foles: "When he asks you how your day’s going, he literally means it. … It comes across as genuine not only with players and coaches, but everyone in the building.”
— Kevin Fishbain (@kfishbain) June 17, 2020
The Bears have had a ton of issues at the quarterback position, and it’s a fair to suggest they still do. But they also have two hard-working and well-respected QBs who appear ready and willing to give the team everything they have — and that’s not a bad place to be in, quarterback-wise.