Can Trubisky Make a Wentz/Goff-like Leap in Year 2?
Flashing back to last season, everyone was calling Los Angeles Rams rookie quarterback Jared Goff a bust following a rough rookie campaign. One year later — with an offensive-minded head coach in Sean McVay and a solid supporting cast — Goff has exploded onto the NFL scene as one of the league’s best quarterbacks.
Similarly in Philadelphia, Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz struggled in the latter half of his rookie year after getting off to a hot start. But from Year 1 to Year 2, Wentz was putting together an MVP resume leading the league’s No. 1 offense before he tore his ACL in Week 14.
The question all Chicago Bears fans are wondering is: Can rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky make that same leap in 2018?
Jeff Dickerson over at ESPN Chicago wrote a feature about how some, including Trubisky’s college teammate, believe that Trubisky is capable of making a Wentz/Goff-like leap in his second season.
Those familiar with all three of the highly touted quarterbacks feel strongly that Trubisky has the necessary skills to emulate the career arcs of Wentz and Goff.
“I wouldn’t be surprised at all if next year people are talking about Mitch the way they are talking about Carson,” Eagles wide receiver Mack Hollins told ESPN.
Hollins has unique insight on the matter. Before he played with Wentz in 2017, the rookie fourth-round pick was Trubisky’s teammate for four seasons at North Carolina.
“As a receiver, you always want the best quarterbacks to be throwing you the ball, and right now, Carson is that guy,” Hollins said. “But I know Mitch has the ability to be that guy. If they said Mitch was an MVP candidate next year, I wouldn’t be surprised at all.”
Also someone with some unique insight is former NFL quarterback Ryan Lindley, who has worked with Trubisky, as well as Wentz and Goff. Lindley sees the similarities Trubisky has to Wentz and Goff, which would make him capable of taking that leap between his rookie and sophomore season.
Former NFL quarterback Ryan Lindley lists Wentz, Goff and Trubisky among his highest-profile protégés. Working in conjunction with Rep 1 Sports — the agency that represents all three quarterbacks — Lindley spent the past two offseasons in California working with each prior to the draft.
“Mitchell has similarities to Goff and Wentz,” Lindley said. “Mitchell has pieces of both of them. It’s the kind of guy he is. Mitchell is a pretty laid-back guy, blue collar and as nice as they come. He’s got that fun-loving quality about him that I compare to Jared that’s probably made Mitchell a quick favorite in the locker room. Guys gravitate towards that stuff.
“When you’re building a team, the quarterback has to be that guy to hold court in the locker room. I think that is where he can continue to take over as he becomes more comfortable and gets his reps in. I think he’s going to earn a lot of respect from the guys that way. The Ohio native kind of comes out in him, too, and he’s like Carson in that he’s a fierce competitor. He wants to win. Each time I shoot him a text and tell him he looks better, his response is, ‘Well, we still need to win and finish it off.’ I think he takes the best of both worlds from those guys.”
You can read the full feature at ESPN Chicago.