Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky didn’t have a long adjustment period to start his NFL career. The now 23-year-old watched from the sidelines just four games before taking over as the starting quarterback in Chicago during the 2017 season.
He didn’t have a huge sample size, but he made enough of an impression to give offensive lineman Kyle Long a lot of confidence in him.
“I saw him in the spring and in training camp and I thought he was a rare talent, something I hadn’t really seen before,” Long told Omnisport in an interview Thursday that was in association with Applebees. “You play against guys like Mitch, you always wish you had them on your team and now we have one.”
Trubisky started 12 games for the Bears in 2017-18 after Chicago traded up to take him with the No. 2 overall pick.
He threw for 2,193 yards with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions while completing 59.4 percent of his passes. Out of the rookies who saw significant time in 2017, Trubisky was second in passing yards, completion percentage, quarterback rating and yards per attempt.
While he had some growing pains and was often protected by the play-calling, what people couldn’t see was the influence he had on his teammates. Long left his first season impressed by the rookie.
“My job is to protect him and just allow him to continue to develop and feel comfortable in the locker room,” Long said. “He’s a leader in our locker room and someone a lot of the guys look up to.”
Chicago opens its season Sept. 9 when it travels to Green Bay to take on the Packers.