Mack: Bears will win with Foles or Trubisky
The Bears’ biggest star and their new quarterback hit it off quite nicely when they first met up at Halas Hall. It was typical of new-teammate exchanges, with Khalil Mack and Nick Foles reminiscing about the handful of times they’ve faced each other.
The most recent of those was when Foles foiled the Bears’ Super Bowl hopes in January 2019 by helping the Eagles eke out a playoff win at Soldier Field. Even though Foles got the better of that matchup, he’s the one relieved to no longer have to worry about Mack charging him in the backfield.
Nonetheless, Mack couldn’t say enough about how much Foles has impressed him in their month or so together.
“Knowing what [the Eagles] did, and not only that, but just seeing the type of guy he is — because he’s a hell of a guy,” Mack said. “You just got the right type of guy. That’s what Nick is. He can play and talk and communicate.”
Like the rest of the Bears, Mack has steered clear from weighing in on the position battle between Foles and Mitch Trubisky. He’s more concerned with the Bears’ defense staying at an elite level anyway.
“All in all, man, just knowing the two guys that are up for the job, whatever they decide to go with, we’re going to be ready,” Mack said. “We’re going to be ready to win a lot
of ballgames, and I can’t wait. Whether it’s [Foles] or [Trubisky], we’re going to win.”
That philosophy proved true in 2018, when Trubisky was a middle-of-the-pack quarterback and the defense was overwhelming. The Bears finished with a 12-4 record and an NFC North title.
Last season, though, Trubisky was a disaster, and the defense, despite ranking fourth in fewest points allowed, wasn’t enough to offset that.
QB battle drags on
It’s a good thing Mack is so at ease with the Bears being undecided at quarterback because it’s going to stay that way for a while.
With two weeks until the Bears begin their first game week, coach Matt Nagy is still splitting snaps between Foles and Trubisky. He has no timetable for trying to nail down a starter and doing him the favor of giving him the bulk of the first-string reps.
“I can tell y’all just to save you from the questions down the road here: It’s not going to happen soon,” Nagy said Sunday. “We’re going to take our time with it.
“I understand that we all want to know right away. We do, too. But we want to use — it’s already a short training camp — as many reps as we can with them.”
The Bears continued to practice without two of their best players: wide receiver Allen Robinson and defensive lineman Akiem Hicks.
Robinson missed his second consecutive day with an ankle injury, and Hicks has been out of three practices since hurting his quadriceps muscle. Nagy brushed off both issues as minor.
“There’s no concern,” he said. “It’s just more so, ‘Is it worth it right now to put them out there with where they’re at?’ I just don’t think it is.”
Robinson was the Bears’ leading receiver the last two seasons; Hicks is arguably their best defensive player after Mack.
The Bears also lost veteran offensive tackle Jason Spriggs to a knee injury Saturday. Nagy had no update other than that Spriggs was unable to practice Sunday.
Bears outside linebacker Khalil Mack faced quarterback Nick Foles in an NFC wild-card game in January 2019 (above) and in a regular-season game in December 2017 (right).