NFL Insider Reveals Key to Matt Nagy’s Job Security

Bears coach Matt Nagy

Getty Head coach Matt Nagy of the Chicago Bears

When it comes to Matt Nagy’s future with the Chicago Bears, rookie quarterback Justin Fields may be the key. Nagy and Bears general manager Ryan Pace have been rumored to be on the hot seat for the last year, and the heat is still very much on heading into Nagy’s fourth season with the team. Nagy seems to sense this.

“The time is now. We know that, and we’re looking forward to it. You can’t live in the past. That’s not what we’re gonna do. I refuse to allow that to happen. This is a new season, and so we’ve got a fresh start. Let’s see what we can do with it,” Nagy told Kenneth Davis on the Under Center podcast June 12.

According to one NFL insider, that fresh start could rest on his 22-year-old quarterback.

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Nagy’s Future ‘Tied to Justin Fields,’ Says Insider

In his July 14 column for Sports Illustrated, NFL insider Albert Breer shared a few interesting details about Nagy’s future in the Windy City:

“NFC North rivals Matt Nagy in Chicago and Mike Zimmer in Minnesota have had their job security raised over the last couple of years. Nagy’s future with the Bears will likely tie to Justin Fields’s development,” Breer wrote, adding:

“What I know is this—from a practice standpoint, things won’t change much early in camp from the way it was in the spring for the Bears quarterbacks. Just as he did in OTAs and minicamp, (Andy) Dalton will take all the first-team snaps in training camp, and Fields will work with the second team.”

We already know Dalton is going to be the starter, and will be taking snaps with the first team. But Breer’s first bit of info is particularly interesting. We also knew Nagy’s future may be tied to Fields — but Breer’s comment about the rookie quarterback’s development seems pertinent.

Developing young signal-callers takes time, and if Nagy’s job hinges on the progression of his young QB, his seat may not be so hot, after all. He may have at least a few more years left in Chicago to develop Fields — and if Fields is a hit, he’ll likely get many more.

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Breer: Situation With Fields Could Change in a Month

Breer also believes that while the plan is for Dalton to start and practice with the first team, plans also change fast in the NFL:

If there is a sliver of an opening here, my belief is it’ll come with the preseason games. The Bears plan to play Fields a lot in those, and that’s smart—because it’ll accelerate his development via the amount of defense he’ll get to see, and offense he’ll get to run. And if he grows with that? And practices well on top of that? Then, maybe, we’re having a different discussion a month from now. The key, as I see it, will be how Dalton plays and how the team plays. There’ve been just three true redshirts among first-round quarterbacks taken since 2008, and in each case, the quarterback played well and the team contended. So if Dalton plays well and the Bears contend, then Fields sits. Otherwise, the door Fields can crack open by doing well over the summer could get kicked down.

The excitement and anticipation surrounding Fields has Bears fans legitimately excited, and they’re hoping he’s up to the challenge whenever he may be called upon. Matt Nagy certainly hopes so, too.

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