Just in time for Christmas, St. Nick gets the start for the Bears.
While it’s not Nöel, Nick Foles will get the call for Chicago on Sunday in a matchup with the Seahawks, playing ahead of both Justin Fields and Andy Dalton.
The decision is a curious one: While Dalton, the team’s backup, has been ruled out with a groin injury, Fields hasn’t been ruled out yet and is a game-time decision as to whether or not he’ll be Foles’ backup on Sunday.
Matt Nagy and Co.’s decision to start Foles is the latest twist in a series of confusing QB moves since the start of the 2021 season. Here’s why Foles is getting the Week 16 start:
Why is Nick Foles starting?
On Christmas Eve, Bears head coach Matt Nagy named Nick Foles the starting quarterback over both Justin Fields and Andy Dalton, as both QB1 and QB2 are dealing with injuries.
Interestingly enough, Fields is a game-time decision as to whether or not he’ll be Foles’ backup on Sunday vs. the Seahawks, and he hasn’t been ruled out yet. Fields suffered an ankle injury in Chicago’s Week 15 game against the Vikings, but finished the game. The rookie passer was limited through practice during the week.
On Friday, Nagy said that the team is “being smart” regarding Fields and they’re trying to determine the pain level that the quarterback is currently dealing with.
Matt Nagy says “we’re being smart” and team is trying to evaluate pain level for Justin Fields.
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) December 24, 2021
It’s not the first injury that Fields has dealt with in 2021: In the preseason, he suffered a minor groin injury, while some cracked ribs sidelined him for a pair of games earlier in the season.
Dalton is dealing with a groin injury which was aggravated this week after his return from the COVID-19 reserve list.
This will be Foles’ first game action in 2021: The Bears refused to trade Foles this past offseason after signing Dalton and moving up in the draft to select Fields, leaving a valuable veteran passer on the roster.
The only other QB on the roster is Ryan Willis, who will have to be elevated from the practice squad this weekend.
The move to start Foles is the latest in a bevvy of quarterback shuffles this season: Dalton had originally been named the starter coming out of training camp, while Fields was eventually named starter, replacing Dalton. Injuries shifted the starting job between the two until Foles got the call for the Seahawks matchup.
What a tangled web Nagy weaves.