When the Chicago Bears host the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, it’ll feature a matchup between two first-round quarterbacks from the 2021 NFL draft in Justin Fields and Trey Lance.
Everyone knows that the 49ers passed on Fields and selected Lance with the third overall pick. Last week, receiver Darnell Mooney vowed that Fields would make San Francisco regret passing on him.
While Fields was flattered by Mooney’s remark, he’s perfectly happy with how things worked out with him landing in Chicago.
“I don’t take anything personal,” Fields said. “I’m happy to be here. I’m glad they passed on me.”
Fields and Lance won’t be on the field at the same time, but it’s the matchup that will be talked about ad nauseam leading up to, during and after kickoff. It’s just the nature of the game. But Fields doesn’t care that he was the fourth quarterback taken in the draft. He’s focused on beating the 49ers on Sunday.
“We’re here to play ball,” Fields said. “We’re not worried about last year’s draft.”
While Fields, and likely Lance, won’t be focused on comparisons, it’s a huge storyline because of what the 49ers mortgaged in order to move up to No. 3 overall (three first-round picks) and their decision to pass on Fields, who many had pegged as the second option behind Trevor Lawrence, in favor of Lance.
One game won’t be enough to determine whether San Francisco made the right or wrong choice at quarterback. If Lance outplays Fields, it’ll be encouraging for the 49ers. But if Fields outplays Lance, Bears fans will continue to smile and praise the football gods that Fields dropped to Chicago at 11th overall.