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QB Trubisky shuts off outside noise
First there was Rex Grossman, and then there was Jay Cutler.
Both were examples of inefficient Bears starting quarterbacks drawing fan and media fire while being supported by strong defenses.
Now, add Mitchell Trubisky to the list or at least that's the general perception.
Trubisky, teammates and HEAD coach Matt Nagy consider it an inaccurate perception to say the least.
The Bears will get their chance to dispell perceived slights and misconceptions with a three-game stretch over 12 days within their division, starting Sunday at home against the Detroit Lions. And they could have some help when they do it.
"I think any time you are drafted as a quarterback early and high in the draft, you're always gonna be critiqued," Nagy said. "But again, the only thing that he needs to worry about is what I think about him and what people in this building think about him. Everybody's entitled to their opinion and that's OK, that's fine, there's nothing wrong with that. But as long as he just understands that the only thing that matters is what we think, nothing will affect him."
Trubisky has suffered through inaccuracy over the last two games, completing 28 of 49 passes for 355 yards with three touchdowns and an interception.
"The only thing that I can think of in regards to just our offense and not his accuracy, we've played some pretty solid defenses here the last few weeks," Nagy said. "I think they're underrated, especially the last two weeks with the Jets and Buffalo. Then you go back to the Patriots.
"There's some good schemes and some good players, but that's good for us, that's good for him. There were a couple balls now and then that got away from him. He'll be the first to tell you. I'll be the first to let him know that, but that's OK. We'll keep improving."
The Bears are fifth overall in scoring and rank first in scoring after 21 opposing turnovers (82 points), so in terms of efficiency, it's difficult to argue they lack it.
And while Trubisky has suffered with fits of wildness, his 96.1 passer rating is just .04 below Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford.
Trubisky in training camp insisted he's off social media for the season, so he said he's unaware of any public criticism.
"I've been great with it," Trubisky said. "I've been off social media, I don't really check it that often and I don't really have it on my phone. So I don't hear any of the outside noise, whether it be positive or negative.
"I just have a lot more time, and my focus is elsewhere; within football and my family and everything else I've got going on."
Some players spend much of their off time on social media.
"Most of it last year had been negative, so it's just a lot of negativity that I blocked out of my life," Trubisky said. "I'm able to just focus on what I needed to do and who I want to be as a player and as a person. It has been a good thing for me just getting off that."
Whether the criticism is warranted, it is fact Trubisky has played the last two games without wide receiver Allen Robinson II. But Robinson went through a full practice for the first time since suffering a groin injury and is expected to play after being a scratch as a game-time decision for two weeks.
"For Allen you know there's that comfort level," Nagy said. "He's worked extremely hard not only physically to come back from his injury but also mentally to take in this playbook. He's a leader in that wide receiver room and our guys feel that, they know that and he leads by example. He's not a real vocal guy when he doesn't have to be. So I think it's just more of just comforting for everybody, you know coaches included to get him out there and see exactly where he's at."
And the offense will have more support on the defensive side since outside linebacker Khalil Mack went through his first full practice on Wednesday since suffering an ankle injury Oct. 14 against Miami.
So now it looks like a full and healthy Bears roster against the world when they face Detroit.
"It really doesn't matter what anybody says on the outside," Trubisky said. "We're the ones putting the work in preparing for each game and putting it on the line every Sunday. What everybody has to say about it, they only know so much."
SERIES HISTORY: 177th regular-season meeting. Bears lead series, 97-74-5. The Lions have won nine of the last 10 and have won three straight, including 27-24 at Soldier Field last year. The only Bears win since 2012 came at Soldier Field in 2016, 17-14. Of the last 12 in the series, six were decided by a field goal or less.