Bears Say Andy Dalton Is Starting QB Even Despite Trading Up For Justin Fields

     

Bears GM Ryan Pace told reporters Thursday night that Andy Dalton is their starting quarterback, even after the team traded up to No. 11 overall to select QB Justin Fields

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“Matt [Nagy] has spoken to Andy Dalton tonight; that communication and clarity for us is really important,” Pace said Thursday night, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “Andy is our starter, and we’re gonna have a really good plan in place to develop Justin and do what’s best for our organization and win games.

Pace explained that they want to let the situation play out and not rush Fields into being their starter. 

“We just have to let it play out,” Pace said. “One of the best feelings in the world would be, ‘Hey, we’re rolling. We’re playing really good football. We’re winning, and we’re looking over there and we’re seeing this guy and we all know — everyone in the building knows — hey, we’ve got a guy.

“As these guys come into this, even all the experiences they have at the college level, growing and watching tape, reading defenses, working in the huddle. It’s just so new for these guys, but it’ll be a daily process, a daily evaluation. But we’re excited to let that play out.

Dalton, 33, is a former second-round pick of the Bengals back in 2011. He was entering the final year of his seven-year, $97.09 million contract, which included $17 million guaranteed when Cincinnati cut him loose. 

Dalton stood to make a base salary of $17.5 million in 2020 when the Bengals opted to release him. He later signed a one-year deal with the Cowboys after the draft. 

The Bears later signed Dalton to a contract this offseason. 

In 2020, Dalton appeared in 11 games for the Cowboys and completed 64.9 percent of his passes for 2,170 yards, 14 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He also rushed for 114 yards.

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