The original “NVP” gets a lot of flack from fans around the league. But is it justified?
Former Chicago Bears starter and Buffalo Bills backup quarterback, Mitch Trubisky was acquired by the Pittsburgh Steelers this off-season, and received mixed reactions from Steeler Nation as to whether it was a good move after the retirement of Ben Roethlisberger. Trubisky, drafted 2nd overall in 2017 to the Bears, was initially panned as a horrible drafting decision by Chicago’s front office. While Trubisky would produce on the field for a horrible team, the decision for the Bears to trade up to grab a quarterback that would’ve been available anyway remained a bad one. Still, Trubisky put up more than solid numbers for a mostly incompetent franchise.
He put the struggling team on his back as best as he could, and became a solid starter in the league.
No, he wasn’t Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady or fellow 2017 draft selection Patrick Mahomes, but Trubisky gave Chicago glimpses of hope for an otherwise sputtering team. Trubisky’s statistical performance was certainly nothing to scoff at in a competitive NFC North, but the 2nd overall pedigree followed him wherever he went, leading many in the NFL to label him an immediate bust.
The 2nd overall pick was, without a doubt, too high for Trubisky. But let’s temper expectations.
If Trubisky had been drafted in the 2nd or 3rd round, he would’ve been viewed as a success, and that’s what he is, a late 2nd round quarterback who shows flashes of highlight material and can win your club some games, provided the supporting cast around him is competent. That’s the key word: competent. The Bears, well, are anything but.
Chicago’s front office decisions have long plagued the team’s ability to win games, with only a single winning season since 2013. Throwing a rookie quarterback into that lion’s den is bound to sting; and it did. A pitiful 5-11 record with Trubisky only throwing 7 touchdown throws all year. It’s important to mention that Trubisky didn’t play the entire season, but it didn’t matter much. The new kid on the block had his confidence shattered, and the coaching staff was refusing to utilize his talents and grow the team around him.
Steelers Insider Says the Plan is to Start Mitch Trubisky; Team will Respectfully Part Ways with Mason Rudolph
The next few seasons would be an improvement, to say the least. And we finally got a look at the potential of Mitch Trubisky.
8,300 yards and 57 touchdowns over the next three years would wake the league up to this young buck’s ability. Shifty in the pocket, with a solid arm and an uncanny talent for tucking it and running himself, Trubisky would be selected to the Pro Bowl in 2018, the season in which the team went 12-4 and secured a playoff spot. Of course, that was a one-off experience that ended with the now-infamous Double-Doink by Cody Parkey to lose the game. Due to that unfortunate turn of events, the public perception of Trubisky was sour to say the least.
Steeler Nation, however, knew better.
After being traded to Buffalo in 2020, the sideline was the permanent home for Trubisky for an entire season, barely seeing any action in lieu of the superstar Josh Allen. Still, his talents were missed by a franchise that once again had to throw a rookie signal-caller into the slaughter. While Justin Fields spent the better part of 2021 running for his life, Trubisky got to relax and wait until a team came knocking. The Steelers expressed interest early and often, and signed Trubisky to a two-year deal in March of this year. Now, the question becomes, can a quarterback who produced for a downtrodden organization translate his talents to a successful one?
Our guess? Absolutely. Purely because Trubisky’s abilities rely heavily on his supporting cast.
Mitch Trubisky is a specific type of quarterback that needs most things around him to be solidified and talent-packed before he can flourish. This isn’t a knock against him. There are only a few passers that can transform a team by themselves. However, the comparisons to his career in Chicago are unfounded. The Steelers offense is young and star-studded, unlike the Bears who could barely throw a team together. Trubisky now has a top 5 running back in the NFL behind him with standout talent Najee Harris, an upper-echelon receiving core to his sides with Diontae Johnson, Chase Claypool, and rookie George Pickens, and a newly improved offensive line. Needless to say, the fireworks are inevitable.
Not to mention the defense, which rivals the best in the entire league, giving Trubisky some much-needed breathing room.
No one is expecting Mitch Trubisky to throw the team on his back and carry them to the promised land, but many in the sports media have panned him entirely, likening his future performances to that of his days in the Windy City. This comparison is unfair and unfounded. A new offensive scheme, talent-packed roster, and a coaching staff willing to work with his talents instead of around them: Mitch Trubisky is going to be dangerously good.
With the ongoing QB battle seemingly coming to a conclusion in Pittsburgh, No. 10 is going to have to push his limits to the edge.
Expect a breakout year from Trubisky in 2022, and a better-than-expected career with the Steelers until this year’s first round pick Kenny Pickett proves his starting caliber. Many around the league saw the Trubisky signing as a death knell for the franchise, but it’s precisely the opposite: a renaissance of young offensive firepower. Trubisky will have his rightful day in the sun, and once the ball gets rolling, it will be hard to stop. As long as the front office keeps a steady rotation of elite talent around Trubisky, he’s going to be more than just a solid starter. He’ll be borderline elite.
Do you expect great things from Mitch Trubisky? Let us know in the comments below!