James Conner knows Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky quite well, and he has a message for the doubters: if you’re sleeping on Mitch, you’re about to get woken up. The Pittsburgh Steelers running back and the Bears QB are good friends, and they go way back. The two have known each other since high school, and in a recent appearance on the Pardon My Take podcast, Conner offered his take on the Bears’ current quarterback situation.
Chicago brought in veteran QB NIck Foles this offseason to compete with and push Trubisky after the starting spot had been his for the previous two-and-a-half seasons. Conner, who competed against Trubisky when they played in the ACC, also considers the Bears QB an old friend. They worked out together after Conner beat cancer prior to the 2017 NFL Draft, and Conner remembers the 453 yards and five passing touchdowns Trubisky put on Pitt while he was quarterback at the University of North Carolina.
Conner was about to hang up the phone to end his conversation with podcast host Dan “Big Cat” Katz before he offered an unsolicited opinion about Trubisky’s upcoming season.
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James Conner on Trubisky: ‘Mitch is Going to Come Out Hot This Year’
“Make sure you’re not sleeping on my boy, Mitch though,” Conner said, almost out of nowhere. “I think Mitch is going to come out hot this year,” Conner added. “That’s my dog, I played Mitch my senior year of high school. We’ve been going at it, you know Pitt vs. North Carolina, Steelers and Bears, even though I wasn’t playing that year, that was 2017.”
Conner also praised Trubisky’s determination, and made a semi-bold prediction about the 2020 season: “I know his work ethic. I know what he’s about to do, so he’s going to come out fired up.”
Conner is among a growing list of players and coaches who have worked with Trubisky in the past and have recently endorsed the fourth-year quarterback. Trubisky and the entire Bears offense struggled last season, but those who know him best seem to think he’s likely to bounce back in a big way.
Trubisky Has a Good Deal of Support
Former Bears guard Kyle Long has endorsed Trubisky over Foles, and Kade McClure, Trubisky’s teammate in high school and current pitching prospect for the Chicago White Sox, recently said in an interview that he has been communicating with the Bears’ QB, and it seems as though the acquisition of Foles has lit a fire under Trubisky that wasn’t there before.
“I texted Mitch right after all of that, and he was like, ‘Let’s go! Let’s go!’ ” McClure said. “Mitch is a competitive and confident guy. I don’t think he’s too worried about Nick Foles. He’s motivated more than ever, and definitely not going to bow down to (Foles). I know this, Mitch will fight and compete.”
McClure also noted that the disappointments of 2019 won’t be deterring the young QB. “Mitch knows he had a down year. But his confidence is at an all-time high … he’s in full football mode.”
How this will all translate on the field remains the primary question surrounding Trubisky — and this franchise — but the fact so many are voicing their support for him says a great deal about his character.