Overlooked Factor That Could Drive Justin Fields' Breakout Year

Elliot Ben Jacob
May 15, 2023  (9:15)

High Expectations for Justin Fields in 2023

The 2023 NFL season holds significant expectations for Justin Fields. As he enters his third year with the Chicago Bears, the team has spent the off-season bolstering his supporting cast, increasing the anticipation of his performance.
The Bears have added D.J. Moore, a legitimate #1 wide receiver, acquired via trade from Carolina. Additionally, the offensive line has been restructured, with Nate Davis signed in free agency and Darnell Wright drafted in the 1st round. If these new recruits meet expectations, Fields' job will undoubtedly become easier.

The Luke Getsy Effect

However, an under-discussed factor contributing to the heightened expectations is Fields' second season under Luke Getsy. Historical trends suggest quarterbacks often see improvements in their second year in an offensive system, particularly in the wide-zone scheme.
This improvement is exemplified by the likes of Mike Shanahan, Gary Kubiak, Kyle Shanahan, and Sean McVay. Observing the consistent progress made from the first to the second year under their guidance suggests a promising outlook for Justin Fields.

Statistical Predictions for Fields Based on Historical Trends

Evidence of this improvement is clear when examining past quarterback performance data. For instance, Jake Plummer saw an increase from 2,182 yards with 15 touchdowns in 2003 to 4,089 yards with 27 touchdowns in 2004.
Similarly, Matt Schaub went from 3,043 yards with 15 touchdowns in 2008 to 4,770 yards with 29 touchdowns in 2009. Other notable examples include Matt Ryan, Jimmy Garoppolo, Kirk Cousins, and Aaron Rodgers, all of whom saw significant improvements in their second year under similar offensive systems.
Historical data indicates that quarterbacks generally see their passing yardage per game rise significantly from year one to year two. On average, this amounts to an increase of 30.38 yards per game. If Fields follows this trend, he will average 179.88 yards per game in 2023, totaling 3,057 yards over 17 games.
As for touchdowns, quarterbacks typically see an average increase of .626 per game, suggesting Fields could throw ten more touchdowns in 2023 than the previous season, totaling 27.

Fields' Potential Impact on the Bears' Season

Even with a conservative estimate, reducing his rushing totals from last season by half (from 571 yards and 4 touchdowns), Fields would accumulate 3,628 total yards and 31 touchdowns. This significant improvement would bring a promising change for the Bears.
If the Bears' defense also manages a modest improvement this season, it's reasonable to believe that this enhanced version of Fields could lead them to the playoffs.
As Read on SportsMockery - People Ignore This Critical Reason Justin Fields Will Explode This Year
MAY 15   |   93 ANSWERS
Overlooked Factor That Could Drive Justin Fields' Breakout Year

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