Buffalo Bills coach Sean McDermott is happy to have helped Josh Allen’s new backup out of a bad situation.
McDermott opened up this week about the enthusiasm that Mitch Trubisky has brought to training camp and the not-so-happy situation he left behind in Chicago. The former Bears starter, a No. 2 overall pick in 2017, has come to Buffalo on something of a one-year quest to prove he still has what it takes to be a starter after the Bears cut him loose, and could have a big opportunity to prove himself coming up this weekend.
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McDermott Praises Backup Quarterback
Speaking to reporters in a press conference this week, McDermott praised Trubisky’s attitude and his play through the first weeks of training camp. McDermott also appeared to make a subtle dig at Trubisky’s former home in Chicago, acknowledging that the quarterback’s first four years in the NFL were far from happy.
“I love it when I see him smile out here because maybe he hasn’t been able to do much of that the last couple years,” McDermott said. “He’s been a great add to our football team.”
Trubisky acknowledged the difference between Chicago and Buffalo, saying he was willing to forgo the chance to compete for a starting job on another team because of the opportunity that Buffalo offered to improve on his play. Bills general manager Brandon Beane said the team pitched to Trubisky and his agent on the idea of developing under the coaching staff that helped Josh Allen made an enormous jump between his second and third seasons.
“It’s just really nice to be a part of a great team and be somewhere where people want you here, and they care about how you’re progressing as a person, as a player,” Trubisky said, via Marcel Louis-Jacques of ESPN. “It was an interesting process, but I feel like I’m right where I’m supposed to be right now, and I’m enjoying being here.”
Trubisky has earned some praise for strong play in training camp, including a long pass to Isaiah Hodgins that reporters said was one of the best passes from any quarterback so far. Trubisky comes off a decent final season in Chicago, having thrown for 2,055 yards last season with 16 touchdowns and eight interceptions in 2020.
Trubisky’s Chance to Shine
McDermott appears to be giving Trubisky plenty of chances to prove that he can still be a starting quarterback. The Bills head coach said on Wednesday that Allen will not be playing in Friday’s preseason opener against the Detroit Lions, leaving Trubisky to split duties with fellow backups Jake Fromm and Davis Webb.
McDermott said that Friday’s game is a chance for some of the team’s younger players to prove themselves, which for Trubisky means the chance to lock down the No. 2 spot behind Allen.
“It’s kind of hard to project right now,” McDermott said about the first preseason game in a press conference. “For this one, we felt like it was important to take a good look at these young players in particular to give them their due. And this is the first time that with the cuts each week basically after each game, we want to make sure we have a good handle on who we have and what we need to do going forward.”