Let’s not pretend. Jay Cutler isn’t going to be the Chicago Bears’ starting quarterback forever. When the time comes for the two to part ways, the team will need a new gunslinger capable of carrying their offense. That’s where rookie David Fales will come in.
The Bears’ sixth-round pick of the 2014 NFL Draft, Fales has spent the majority of his football career flying under the radar. From a little-known high school prospect to underrated passer at San Jose State, Fales has made a living by being the guy few people have heard of. Now with the Bears, though, it won’t be long before folks start to understand why he’s one of the NFL’s most intriguing young quarterbacks.
Possessing outstanding accuracy, good pocket presence and a knack for making plays when it matters most, Fales seems to be the epitome of what the Bears are looking for in a successor to Cutler. While he might not have a cannon for an arm or the athleticism to consistently move the chains with his feet, Fales has the smarts and understanding of the position to be a quality starter. Plus, he’s a proven winner with the leadership that Cutler tends to lack at times.
The only problem is figuring out when exactly he’ll get his opportunity.
Cutler signed a seven-year, $126.7 million deal with the Bears this offseason. However, Chicago can get out of the deal after three years with no guarantees beyond 2017, which will likely be the route the Bears opt to take considering Cutler’s inconsistency and inability to deliver in the clutch.
When the time comes, Fales will be ready. Not only does he already have the tools to be an effective starter, but he’ll be under the tutelage of quarterback guru Marc Trestman during his stay in Chicago. If Trestman can turn Josh McCown into a viable starter, there’s no telling what type of magic he can work with the moldable Fales.
The Bears are currently trending upward. They have a deadly passing attack featuring Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery, and are coming off a busy offseason during which they rebuilt their defense. Assuming it doesn’t all come crumbling down in the next few years, Fales will eventually take the reins of a team in prime position to contend.
When that happens, good things will ensue. Fales has a bright future with the Bears.