It appears the final countdown has begun to name the Chicago Bears' starting quarterback to open the 2020 season, after all.
On Saturday, Bears coach Matt Nagy indicated he would not announce a starter before the team's season opener on Sept. 13 at Detroit. However, on Monday, Nagy made it clear that a decision as to whether Mitchell Trubisky or Nick Foles will start would be announced in the week leading up to the game -- most likely on Monday or Sept. 9.
"What I meant, to keep it real simple, was that there was not going to be a quarterback named this week that we're in right now," Nagy said Monday, via the team website. "So I apologize if I made that gray. But there will be no waiting until the middle of the week or the end of the week for that to happen. That wouldn't be fair to our team and it wouldn't be fair to the quarterbacks."
Nagy did not indicate who was the frontrunner or give a precise day, though he suggested the Monday or Wednesday preceding the Sunday opener.
"Honestly, we don't know that," Nagy said. "But it would be in that timeframe in there somewhere. You will know by the time most teams usually know. We're not hiding anything. We're going through, for us, this whole process and we don't even know that yet to be quite honest. So we're talking through those situations and what's best and how to go about it. So we're just really honestly not there yet."
Trubisky, the No. 2 pick of the 2017 NFL Draft, is entering his fourth season with the Bears following a third campaign in Chicago that was met with harsh criticism after the team failed to make the playoffs and the offense failed to make noise throughout a sputtering season. Though many ills troubled Chicago, Trubisky's inability to spark a return to the playoffs after a successful 2018 run called for a change.
In the offseason, the Bears traded the Jaguars for Foles, who ended Chicago's playoff hopes in that aforementioned 2018 season a year after winning the Super Bowl MVP with the Eagles.
In their respective careers, neither quarterback has played a full regular season, so numbers suggest each of them will start at some point.
Nonetheless, Nagy's decision on who will open the season as the starting signal-caller is one of the most anticipated offseason resolutions and is likely to set the tone for the Bears' 2020 campaign. Trubisky is in desperate need of rekindling a career that's never approached the elite level of a quarterback whom the franchise traded up to the second pick to select. Foles is receiving one more chance to be a franchise quarterback from start to finish in a season as phenomenal past postseason success has afforded him.
And the Bears are looking for a quarterback who can aid the offense in doing its part to match a Super Bowl-caliber defense with hopes of regaining an NFC North title and playoff aspirations.