It makes for an interesting dilemma for Bears head coach Matt Nagy, who has a veteran QB with Pro Bowl-starting experience in Dalton, another veteran who started much of last season in Nick Foles still around and, of course, Fields, the No. 11 overall pick of the draft and Chicago fans' anointed savior for autumns to come.
Nagy has not offered any answers as to how it will play out, but did make it clear that he realizes particular focus needs to be given to how Fields is introduced to NFL action and perhaps the starting lineup.
"We are in a position right now where, with the three quarterbacks that we have, we know that we got to put a really good plan together for all three of those guys," Nagy said Wednesday on NFL Network's Schedule Release '21. "The obvious one here with the draft just happening is with Justin Fields and us going up to get him. We know what we have sitting in front of us with him. We gotta make sure that he has a successful entry plan and we don't know how that's gonna look. But at the same point and time, we have Andy Dalton on our roster. Andy's come in here and done a really good job in these Zoom meetings and he's really excited, too, to be a big part of this and see what he can do with us. It is unique. It's gonna be different."
It's surely a conundrum for Nagy, who along with general manager Ryan Pace, is very likely already on the hot seat going into the 2021 season as their job security is concerned.
Following a 2020 campaign in which the Bears backed into the playoffs for a one-and-done appearance, Chicago's offense was in dire need of a makeover. Unable to secure a big-name signal-caller via trade or free agency, the Bears signed Dalton to a one-year pact after he came off the bench for the Cowboys a year ago.
It was a stop-gap, of course, and on draft day, the Bears were bold and traded up to No. 11 overall for Ohio State's Fields. It was a move generally exclaimed about by media and Bears fans alike.
However, as is the case with any first-round QB, the clock immediately began ticking as to when the new hope would get on the field.
Nagy's trying to say the right things and be as diplomatic as possible, especially considering he even went out of his way to mention having a plan for Foles.
Still, Nagy realizes planning for Fields is tops on the agenda and said as much.
There's no plan in place, apparently, but there is a plan to make a plan. And in mid-May, perhaps that's enough.
"I have a lot of belief and faith in our coaches and our players and the rest of our team," Nagy said, "to do everything we can to get off to a fast start."