The 2021 NFL Regular Season schedule leaks are proving one thing and that is that the Chicago Bears will be primetime darlings during the regular season.
On Wednesday morning, it had already leaked that the Bears were going to have to at least four primetime games for the 2021 NFL Regular Season. Those games were: Week 1 at Los Angeles Rams for Sunday Night Football; Thanksgiving day at Detroit Lions; December 12 at Green Bay Packers for Sunday Night Football; and December 20 hosting the Minnesota Vikings for Monday Night Football.
The Bears now have a fifth primetime game on tap for the 2021 regular season. Danny Parkins of 670 The Score reported that the Bears will be on Monday Night Football for their Week 9 matchup on the road against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The NFL is clearly showcasing the Bears for the 2021 regular season given the 5 primetime games that are currently on the schedule. Perhaps more interesting than the five primetime games in themselves is that four of the games will occur during the second half of the 2021 NFL Regular season.
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After selecting Justin Fields in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, Bears’ head coach Matt Nagy and general manager Ryan Pace have insisted that the plan has not changed and that veteran Andy Dalton is expected to be the Week 1 starting quarterback.
That certainly may be the case but leaks of the Bears’ 2021 NFL Regular Season schedule would seem to indicate that the NFL believes that Fields will be the team’s starting quarterback sooner rather than later.
For the Bears’ Week 9 game against the Steelers, it is their second matchup during the 2021 regular season where they will be playing against a quarterback they potentially had interest in earlier this off-season. Prior to Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger signing a new contact to remain in Pittsburgh in February, the Bears reportedly had internal conversations about making a run at the veteran quarterback according to Jason La Canfora:
"Chicago needs a major upgrade, and the options are limited. League sources said the Bears were in fact pretty serious about Carson Wentz, and had internal discussions about Big Ben as well and were primed to be perhaps the only landing spot for him had he not agreed to take a significant pay cut to stay in Pittsburgh."
Fortunately for the Bears, the narrative has changed since then. The Chicago Bears now have a quarterback in Justin Fields that has the potential to be their franchise quarterback for at least the next seasons as opposed to an aging veteran in Roethlisberger with diminishing skills.