COLUMN: Justin Fields is the best quarterback from the 2021 draft class



Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields walks off the field after the Miami Dolphins beat the Bears 35-32 in an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 6, 2022 in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

By Carlos Finney Jr., Sports Reporter

This is an opinion piece by Carlos Finney Jr., a sports reporter at the Northern Star, and does not reflect the Northern Star’s or the sports staff’s opinion as a whole.

Justin Fields put on another highlight reel performance this past Sunday against the Miami Dolphins that has solidified him as of right now the best quarterback in his draft class.

Fields was the 11th overall pick in the 2021 draft class. Quarterbacks picked ahead of him include Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson and Trey Lance. Other notable quarterbacks from that draft include Mac Jones and Davis Mills. All of these quarterbacks were placed in a way better situation than Fields by far except maybe Trevor Lawrence because of Urban Meyers and the coaching situation in Jacksonville. 

Still, Fields also had a coaching change this past offseason but, the difference is that these quarterbacks received help at important skill positions on offense to support them. Lawrence got help at the wide receiver position with players like Christian Kirk, Zay Jones and Marvin Jones. Same with Zach Wilson with the Jets drafting wide receivers the past two years with Garrett Wilson and Elijah Moore. Fields received little to nothing coming into this season getting low-budget wide receivers in free agency with guys like Byron Pringle and Equanimeous St. Brown. 

The Chicago Bears’ offensive line has been struggling and still are while Fields’ receivers still can’t seem to get separation to get open and can’t catch the ball. Then the defense has depleted because of the trades of defensive end Robert Quinn and linebacker Roquan Smith.

With all of these issues, Fields has been carrying the Chicago Bears on his back to keep them scoring in games. After Sunday’s game, Fields became the first player in league history since 1950 to rush for 140 yards and throw for three or more touchdown passes, according to the Chicago Bears’ official website.  

Compared to the other quarterbacks from the 2021 draft class, Fields has clearly shown that he has the most superstar potential. According to Jack McKessy from Draft Network, the last few weeks of NFL action must have some of the teams that passed on him questioning that decision. 

If Fields continues his stellar play for the rest of the season there will be no doubt on who the best quarterback from last year’s draft was and who is the future of the Chicago Bears organization.