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Examining NFC Quarterback Updates: Justin Fields, Jordan Love, and Kevin O’Connell’s Impact on the Bears, Packers, and Vikings

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Bears

Bears DB Jaquan Brisker said the team is rallying around QB Justin Fields and they want him under center next season.

I want Justin. We all want Justin. Let’s go!” Brisker said, via NFL.com. “That’s our guy. That guy makes plays for sure and he’s a leader. We like a guy like that. He’s giving it all he’s got… He’s amazing for sure. You can’t let a guy like that slip.”

Bears DE Montez Sweat said Fields is under appreciated and compared him to the game’s top quarterbacks.

He makes plays like the Lamar Jacksons and the Patrick Mahomes‘, and guys don’t really hype it up like they would other quarterbacks,” Sweat added. “I’m happy he’s on my side.

Bears DB Eddie Jackson said Fields has given the team everything he has and he’s been a great leader on and off the field.

You got to appreciate him, man,” Jackson said of Fields. “All the stuff he’s doing, he’s been going through, all the talk about him. He’s been blocking it out and going out here balling and leading this team. You got to tip your hat to a guy like that. He’s shown true resilience. He’s a true leader. He just keeps coming out here every week, denying what everyone says and just proving them wrong.

  • Bears HC Matt Eberflus on looking at continuing to call defensive plays this offseason: “I’m certainly comfortable in that position, I enjoy it. I have a passion for it.” (Courtney Cronin)

Packers

Packers HC Matt LaFleur praised QB Jordan Love for all the work he’s put in that has allowed to him to have success in the second-half of the season.

It’s a lot of hard work that’s been put in,” LaFleur said, via Packers Wire. “We’ve evolved as an offense, obviously there’s a learning curve any time you’ve got a bunch of young players and trying to figure out what everybody does well. It’s a credit to everyone involved from our assistance coaches down to our players. I think Jordan Love, I can’t say enough great things about him. Just his ability to hang in there versus some tough looks. Drifting away from pressure. Putting the ball in play. Allowing his guys to go make plays. I think he’s playing at an incredibly high level. Super happy for him because he’s put in a ton of work to get to this point.

LaFleur explained that QB coach Tom Clements also deserves a lot of credit for helping prepare Love and making sure the line of communication is clear throughout the week.

There’s a lot of good communication throughout the course of the week,” LaFleur added. “Understanding why we are calling certain things and what we are trying to get to. I think what’s been the biggest difference is the trust, in terms of the trust I have in him, when it’s not the right look to go out there and not make a bad play worse, or get us out of a bad play. Just him playing the position. He does such a great job of reading whatever concept we have called for what the defense presents and just going through it, and just playing it true. I think he’s done a really good job. Tom Clements deserves a lot of credit for his ability to groom him and the work that Jordan’s put in.”

LaFleur added that he believes Love’s potential is limitless.

I really think the sky’s the limit for him,” LaFleur said. “He’s just showing a glimpse of what he can ultimately be.

  • Ian Rapoport reports that Packers WR Jayden Reed will undergo additional tests on his ribs after x-rays were negative. His status for Week 18 is currently in question.

Vikings

Vikings HC Kevin O’Connell said that no decision has been made about who will start at quarterback for the final game of the season.

“The decision we’ll make will be based upon that position putting our group in a place to try to move the football and have success,” O’Connell said at his postgame press conference. “We did not do that tonight. We’ll look at it, all options are on the table.”

  • O’Connell later said he has already decided on who the starter will be for Week 18 but will not announce it because he hasn’t met with the quarterbacks in person yet. (Kevin Seifert)
  • O’Connell on the chance that S Harrison Smith is about to play his final game with the Vikings: “I’m hoping it’s not. I’m hoping that this is not the end for him just because I selfishly want him around our team and around our defense and around our program.” (Seifert)

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