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Justin Fields to Get Lots of Work at Steelers OTAs

The Pittsburgh Steelers plan to get a long look at Justin Fields in OTAs right away, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.

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Pittsburgh Steelers Chicago Bears Justin Fields
Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields (1) passes during an NFL football game between the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears Sunday, Jan. 7, 2024, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Matt Ludtke)

One legitimate concern about Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Justin Fields’s game is his pocket awareness, which often leads to unnecessary sacks. He just doesn’t see the field very well. However, Russell Wilson has the same issue, so the Steelers might be dealing with a potential dilemma.

In the last two seasons, Russell Wilson has taken 100 sacks. Justin Fields has taken 99. No other quarterback in the NFL has taken more than 80, according to former NFL quarterback and current ESPN analyst Dan Orlovsky.

Fields didn’t have much success in Chicago, posting a 10-28 record as a starter in three seasons, but he had no stability on the coaching front and barely any weapons to work with. But Drew Brees wants to see Justin Fields used in a different way in Pittsburgh, and likened him to Taysom Hill.

“Justin Fields obviously has an incredible skill set and I’m excited to see how Pittsburgh uses him this year,” Brees said on the Dan Patrick Show. “I would actually envision a situation where it’s almost like a Taysom Hill-type package like we had in New Orleans. Russell Wilson is your starting quarterback, Justin Fields is getting seven to 10 snaps a game. How problematic would that be for a defense?

He can come in and do many things explosively in the run game and the pass game. Why wouldn’t they have started him off that way as a rookie,” Brees said in reference to the Chicago Bears. “Hey, you’re not going to be the starter, but we’re going to have a package of stuff for you that brings you along to kind of get your feet wet and get you into this without feeling like you’re throwing the whole thing on his shoulders.”

Fields had two head coaches and three different offensive coordinators in his three years in the Windy City. That’s an incredibly tough environment for a young quarterback to develop and grow in. And so, the Steelers plan to get to work with him very early in OTAs, according to Jeremy Fowler, who says Fields will get a lot of reps.

“Justin Fields, expect him to get a lot of reps,” Fowler said. “The Steelers, I’m told, love to get the backup quarterback, sometimes with the first team, second team, scout team. They’re going to move Fields all over to get him a lot of throws early on.”

Historically, the Bears have never got it right at quarterback. Jay Cutler is their all-time passing leader with 23,443 yards. That tells you everything you need to know.

The Bears had the opportunity to select Patrick Mahomes in 2017, but they picked Mitch Trubisky at No. 2 overall … The Franchise is just cursed when it comes to quarterbacks. Perhaps No. 1 overall pick Caleb Williams could change things, or he’ll be the next QB to fall flat on his face in Chi-Town.

Pittsburgh Steelers Chicago Bears Justin Fields

Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields (1) passes during an NFL football game between the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears Sunday, Jan. 7, 2024, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Matt Ludtke)

Fields took a small step forward in 2023, his third year as Chicago’s starting quarterback, but will hope take a bigger one with the Steelers. The Ohio State alum threw 370 times, completing 227 for 2,562 yards and 16 touchdowns. He threw nine interceptions and maintained an 86.3 passer rating and a 5.29 adjusted net yards per attempt.

In 2022, he was 192 of 318 for 2,242 yards, 17 touchdowns and 11 interceptions, an 85.2 quarterback rating and 4.63 adjusted net yards per attempt.

Since 2022, Fields has the most rushing yards by a quarterback with 1,800 yards and 6.3 yards per carry. Both figures are higher than Lamar Jackson’s.