BOURBONNAIS – Mitch Trubisky arrived in Bourbonnais last Thursday brimming with enthusiasm to get back to football.“It’s the best time of year again” he told the media. “Back to football. Back here with the boys. Another opportunity.
“Obviously, a lot of excitement around what we did last year, but there is a lot of work to do. We know what is ahead of us. We’re just all excited to get back and see what we can accomplish this season.”
Five days in and coming off a practice conducted in the worst of conditions with a steady rain throughout on turf that became progressively sloppier as the morning went on, Trubisky, it’s reasonable to assume, hasn’t come out of the gate quite as strongly as he hoped.
Monday’s practice shouldn’t be used as a measuring stick of anything because of the conditions, but for the most part the defense out-performed the offense again, and it has from Day 1.
Through four practices — two with pads and two without — other than one beautiful connection with Taylor Gabriel on a go route in the rain, Trubisky’s accuracy and timing with his receivers on deeper throws has been inconsistent at best and a little bit off more often than not.
If Trubisky is disappointed at all in his play so far, he’s not saying. Asked how he felt about Tuesday’s work, the third-year signal caller said, “It was good. It was a solid day, fought through the conditions, but we love that. We love the challenge every day to come out here.
“We got better in some areas and we’ve got to go back to the film and find the other areas that we need improvement and just keep working, keep get better, keep going through the installs in this offense and make sure we’re just building on every day.”
Clearly, part of Trubisky’s challenge, perhaps the biggest part is facing the NFL’s No. 1 defense every day, and that he doesn’t dispute at all.
“For sure, just a lot of different looks. Obviously we’ve got a lot of great players on that side of the ball, so they’re going to challenge us in every single drill, which is great, whether we’re doing red zone, two minute, every situation they’re going to present a different challenge and they’ve thrown a bunch of good looks at us, and it’s great for us as an offense to see those looks.”
Trubisky is also extremely up front about the fact there is still a lot of work to do and in explaining the work he’s putting in to make sure he and his offense are moving forward.
“I’m looking at mistakes and I’m looking at areas I’ve grown in, and then when we have a mistake on the field, make sure I’m talking to my guys and make sure we’re fixing it.
“And make sure I’m doing my job; my eyes, my footwork are in the right place, I’m going to the right spot with the ball and then just controlling what I can control and just improving it.
“So just taking a lot of notes, having that constant communication with coach, having what he wants me to do on the field and kind of being an extension of him.
“Just continue to criticize myself and try to be a perfectionist, but I see the growth as well.
“It’s practice. You’re going to make mistakes. They’re meant to be made, but you’ve got to come back and correct them and get better each day.”
Almost no NFL teams or players even vaguely resemble on opening day of the season what they looked like the fifth day of training camp, so it will be weeks before we have a solid picture of where Trubisky is heading into season No. 3.
What is good right now is to hear the approach Trubisky is taking to getting there.
“It’s all about that positive mindset, putting the last play behind us and doing better the next play and we did a lot better job of that today than we did yesterday, so I would say that’s growth for us.”
The main focus of this preseason will continue to be how much more Trubisky can grow over the next 5 ½ weeks.