Justin Fields wouldn’t mind getting the roughing calls he sees veteran quarterbacks get, thank you very much.
The rookie QB for the Chicago Bears has been sacked more times than any other quarterback in the league up to this point (29 times), but he has also been taking a beating on some hits that arguably should be drawing roughing the passer penalties but aren’t. Take what happened during Chicago’s most recent loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, for example.
Fields was sacked three times in the 29-27 loss, and he was also knocked around by Pittsburgh’s defense, but he didn’t seem to be getting the same calls veteran QB Ben Roethlisberger got on the other side:
When he was asked about the hits he took after the game and the lack of yellow flags that followed, Fields had some interesting things to say.
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Fields Says He Questioned & Called Out Ref
Fields told the media after the team’s loss to the Steelers on Monday Night Football that he spoke to a referee during the game about not getting the same calls he saw Roethlisberger getting, and he shared details of their conversation:
“Yeah, he told me that he (the defender) ran into me, which I thought is a late hit, so I mean, if you run into me after I throw the ball, I don’t know. I said, ‘Big Ben just got that call, so I don’t know why you can’t give me that call.’ I just needed him to call it both ways. That’s what I told him. That’s the only conversation we had.”
The rookie then explained why he didn’t expect to start seeing more flags thrown for roughing the passer where he’s concerned:
“I mean, it’s a common theory,” Fields said. “The vets, they get those calls. I think Joe Burrow said something like that a few weeks ago, like once we get older and once, we get to that time, we’re going to get those calls, but being a young QB you’re just not going to get those calls and you just have to face the fact.”
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Fields is Beginning to Stack Impressive Games
While the Bears have lost four games in a row, the rookie quarterback has shown improvement, particularly in recent weeks. Fields has stacked back-to-back impressive performances, first against the San Francisco 49ers, and again against the Steelers. The 22-year-old signal-caller went 19-27 for 175 yards, a touchdown and an interception against the Niners, and he also had a career day on the ground, netting 103 yards and a score on 10 rushes.
He followed that up with a career-high 291 passing yards against a capable Steelers defense, bringing the Bears back late in the fourth quarter despite ultimately falling just short. When Chicago needed him to perform most, he did, and that’s an encouraging sign for the team.
Fields wound up with the highest PFF rating amongst all QBs Week 9 (90.5), and all arrows seem to be pointing up where he’s concerned.
If only he could get the benefit of a few roughing calls if and when they occur.