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Mitchell Trubisky, Bears

Bears: 3 main priorities for Mitchell Trubisky this offseason

Mitchell Trubisky is on the hot seat. While the Chicago Bears witnessed those picked after him in the 2017 NFL Draft — Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson — win in the playoffs, Trubisky regressed in 2019.

After a Pro Bowl 2018 campaign, Trubisky saw his passer rating sink from 95.4 to 83. His interception totals went down by two (from 12 to 10) while playing one more game. So did his passing totals. The North Carolina product tossed for 3,138 yards and 17 touchdowns on a 63.2% completion rate.

A year after winning the division in 2018, the Bears fell to third in the NFC North with Trubisky leading them. He failed to impress in his third year. Most assume he isn’t the franchise quarterback in the Windy City.

Nonetheless, the Bears will likely employ Trubisky next season, no matter if they add a veteran or draft a prospect. He will have a shot to win the starting job. If he wants to do so, he’ll need to improve his game. Here are three main priorities for the former No. 2 pick.

3. Work on hip mechanics

Trubisky is not an accurate passer. His true completion rate of 68.5% (18th in the NFL), via Player Profiler, does not do that notion justice. As is the era of efficient passing, Trubisky’s completion rate benefits from Matt Nagy’s scheme that gives him plenty of opportunities to target to open pass-catchers.

Trubisky often fails to hit those open targets. He’s a boom-or-bust passer — sometimes he’ll throw a rainbow, other times, it’ll be an errant incompletion. He must fix his accuracy if he wants to stay in the NFL and be a force for the Bears; a good way of doing that is working on his hip mechanics.

Too often, Trubisky doesn’t make a full plant and hip-swivel in his throws, causing him to “arm-pass,” and therefore lose accuracy. He needs to focus on the basics — making sure he puts his hips into passes at all times.

2. Watch and learn

Trubisky’s limited experience at North Carolina shows in several ways. One: He’s a questionable decision-maker. According to PlayerProfiler, he finished seventh in the NFL in turnover worthy passes with 28. It doesn’t help that the Bears’ quarterback tends to shrink when pressured.

Trubisky can’t gain live-game experience in the offseason, but he can watch and learn. What does that mean? Film room, and potentially learning firsthand from a quarterback the Bears bring in to give him competition.

If the Bears acquire a veteran passer to compete with Trubisky for the starting job, he should not take that as a threat. Instead, he should learn from how they prepare, study, rehab and anything else that comes with being an NFL starting quarterback.

1. Don’t listen to the noise

There will be comments after this article calling Trubisky a bust for the Bears. That’s fair. He certainly hasn’t lived up to the hype of being a No. 2 pick. That only gets emphasized with Mahomes and Watson’s success.

Trubisky has to ignore that.

Criticism is part of the job of being an NFL quarterback. It’s a job for those with thick skin. If Trubisky can’t block out the noise with the Bears, he needs to learn how to — unless he wants media and anonymous Twitter users in his head.