LAKE FOREST, Ill — Many outside the organization have been free to express their frustrations at the start of the Bears’ season, and their quarterback is no different.
Justin Fields was honest about his play last week and the reason why, during his news conference at Halas Hall on Tuesday afternoon.
“I felt like I wasn’t necessarily playing my game. I felt like I was kinda robotic,” said Fields when asked about what he didn’t like about his performance in a 27-17 loss to the Bucs. “Not playing like myself.”
So why did he feel like he was not playing that way? His next response has generated plenty of attention on Wednesday.
“Could be coaching, I think,” said Fields in response to that question. “At the end of the day, the’re doing their job when they’re giving me what to look at and stuff like that, but at the end of the day, I can’t be thinking about that when the game comes. I prepare myself throughout the week, and when the game comes, it’s time to play free at that point.
“Just thinking less and playing more.”
Some read that as a bit of a shot at Bears head coach Matt Eberflus and offensive coordinator Luke Getsy, which immediately created waves among fans on social media.
Later in the afternoon, Fields took time to speak to the media in the locker room about his comments earlier in the day, saying they were taken out of context.
“I’m not blaming anything on the coaches, I’m never going to blame anything on my teammates. Whatever happens in the game, I will take all the blame. I don’t care if it’s a dropped pass – it should have been a pass – put it on me. Never when you hear anything out of my mouth to where I would blame it on somebody else in this organization, my teammates. Never will you hear that.
“I just want to clear that up. Just know that I need to play better, that’s it. Point blank. That’s what I should have said in the first place.”
Fields, like the rest of the Bears, is off to a slow start this season, going 40-of-66 through the air for 427 yards with two touchdowns compared to three interceptions. One thing that’s different from last year is his running, since he has just 13 carries for 62 yards and a score against Tampa Bay in Week 2.
Last season, Fields had a breakthrough by rushing for a franchise-record 1,143 yard and eight touchdowns, but that has been missing early in the season.
During his initial news conference, Fields said that the coaches have been receptive to what he’s had to say as the team looks ahead to their third game of the season against the Chiefs on Sunday.
“Coach Flus (Matt Eberflus), Luke (Getsy), everybody in the building is always receptive to what we have to say, anytime anybody has a problem or comes to them with anything,” said Fields. “They’ve always been receptive to us.”
So after an eventful day at Halas Hall, what’s Field’s mindset on as he gets ready for the reigning Super Bowl champions?
“My goal this week is to say ‘F’ it and just go out there and play football how I know how to play football,” said Fields, who has 15 games to get things turned around in his third NFL season.