Justin Fields

Justin Fields' Focus, Potential Has New Bear Ryan Griffin Excited

Fields' focus, potential has new Bears tight end Griffin excited originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

LAKE FOREST – In nine NFL seasons, new Bears tight end Ryan Griffin has played with his fair share of quarterbacks, from Deshaun Watson to Sam Darnold and Zach Wilson.

But Justin Fields is different.

"He is the most focused individual I've ever been around," Griffin said Wednesday at Halas Hall after Day 2 of mandatory minicamp, "Determined, hard-working. I don't see him smiling ever, really, and it's not because he's not having fun out there, but this guy wants to win. It just oozes through every movement he makes out there."

Griffin arrives in Chicago after three years with the New York Jets. The veteran tight end is ready to do whatever coach Matt Eberflus and the staff need to help the Bears right the ship.

Everyone on the Bears' offense is still in the early stages of learning Luke Getsy's scheme. The offense had a rough day Tuesday to open minicamp but bounced back Wednesday with a sharp outing.

The Bears' new staff has put it on Fields to learn the offense and bring the rest of the unit along with him. The second-year quarterback's intense focus is most apparent when directing and correcting his teammates.

"I think, in the huddle is -- you know, he is learning, but while he's learning, he's upset with mistakes," Griffin said. "He's not OK with guys in the wrong place. He'll tell you that, and that's what you need in the leader of this offense. So, an example would be some guy makes an [missed assignment], 'It's not OK, we'll move on.' No, we get it corrected right there, and it starts with No. 1."

Like almost everyone in Chicago, it's Fields' potential that has Griffin fired up to play with the 23-year-old.

I will say I've played with a lot of quarterbacks over my career -- anybody can look that up, see who I've played with -- Justin's right there," Griffin said. "Right there. I don't think anyone knows exactly how good he can be, but I'm excited. I'm really excited to see what he can do."

Aside from Darnell Mooney and tight end Cole Kmet, Fields has an entirely new cast of weapons with which he is trying to create chemistry.

Among the new members of the Bears' offensive arsenal is Byron Pringle. The former Kansas City Chief is still gelling with his new signal-caller, but so far, he has liked what he has seen from No. 1.

"Oh man, Justin's great," Pringle said Wednesday. "He's able to move in and out of the pocket, extend plays, and he's got a nice, tight spiral. And when he delivers, he delivers."

Getsy is tailoring the system to Fields' strengths. The scheme should allow guys like Pringle to thrive by not putting too much on their plate and just letting them do what they do best.

However, the trains only run on time if the conductor is locked in. Fields is the key to everything, and he's working harder than anyone to deliver on his star potential.

"He wants to take over the league," Mooney said Tuesday. "He's already Justin Fields. He wants to be the best quarterback in the league. He's taken the strides to be there. I've got unbelievable faith that he will be there, and his success is my success. So as long as he's doing good, I'm doing good, we're all doing good."

One thing is apparent, whether spoken or silent: As Justin Fields goes, so go the 2022 Bears.

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