What Andy Dalton told Justin Fields after the rookie was named permanent starter

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The Andy Dalton era lasted a whole game and a half due to an unlucky knee injury and a rookie quarterback who took advantage of his opportunity in the starting lineup.

On Wednesday, Bears head coach Matt Nagy named Justin Fields the team’s permanent starting quarterback. Despite Dalton preparing for his first full practice in three weeks. Now, he’ll be Fields’ backup.

It’s never easy losing a job to injury, but it wasn’t totally unexpected given how things have panned out with young players taking over. Dalton knew the writing was on the wall at some point this season, perhaps not as soon as Week 5 — just in time for him to return healthy.

“What needs to be understood the plan and process we had going into this was important,” Nagy said. “When Andy got hurt with his knee, that sped the plan up. I have always said from the beginning, we’ll know and he’s done everything to show us he’s ready for this opportunity.”

Dalton called Fields on Tuesday and told him “it was a great opportunity for me and that he’d be here for it all, for everything I needed,” Fields told the media Wednesday.

“He just didn’t want it to be awkward. He didn’t want out relationship to change because of the situation.”

In case you weren’t aware, Dalton remains a wonderful person. He’s been a great teammate over the years, and even he understood that this moment was coming at some point.

While fans are quick to embrace Fields as the future of the franchise, the thing is Dalton actually played decent in his game and a half as a starter. The offense looked decent enough. But once Fields got a chance to show what he’s capable of — with his impressive skillset and beauty of a deep ball against the Lions — there was just no going back to Dalton.

Even Nagy knew that.