Nick Foles isn’t afraid to speak his mind.
Following last week's win over the Carolina Panthers, the Bears quarterback seemed a little irritated in his session with the media. As has been the case over five wins now, the Bears offense was again questioned about its productivity, even after a win.
“Are we where we want to be?” Foles said last Sunday. “No, we’re not where we want to be, but I am excited about our offense.”
He said it with a fire not often felt in his interview sessions. His teammates saw and heard that passion too.
Foles talks a lot about building relationships in the locker room, building chemistry and what that can do for a team facing adversity. It can sometimes come off as cliche, but Foles really believes it. He lived it in 2017 with Philadelphia.
“When he feels passionate about something, he is going to go right into it,” Bears coach Matt Nagy said. “I think you felt that, we all felt that, and whatever [he said] is what was on his mind and what he believes.”
Receiver Allen Robinson thought it translated into a productive film session Wednesday as the Bears started their week of practice.
“Everybody chiming in on different details and stuff that they can improve on,” Robinson said.
Robinson went on to say that Foles is a “leader by nature,” and that Foles is constantly trying to lead the Bears, whether that’s in the film room or on the field.
While Foles is quick to defend his team, he doesn’t become too hung up on distractions. He’s hyper-focused on the task at hand. He wrote in his 2018 book about cutting out distractions before Super Bowl LII. He didn’t speak with friends and family during the week before the game. His wife handled all the ticket arrangements.
He’s not, for instance, upset that Tom Brady didn’t shake his hand after the Bears beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 5.
“I’m sure that someday Tom and I will have a great conversation about it and probably just laugh at it,” Foles said Thursday. “There’s obviously history there from a big game we both played in once.”
Foles is focused on trying to find solutions to this Bears offense that, while imperfect, he believes in. It’s all about those conversations, Foles said. The more the Bears work through the adjustments, the better the offense will be.
The Bears have some serious concerns on the offensive line and in the run game. They're not going anywhere if they can't fix those. They've struggled through stretches of games, but they've found ways to score and give this team a 5-1 start.
“Every week we’ve made little incremental changes and we’re progressing,” Foles said. “I’d like to see a bigger progression this week, but you never know. The ultimate goal in this game is to win the game. It’s not to put up a thousand fantasy points.”
Nagy loves the way Foles responds to negativity and criticism.
“This stuff here when our offense is struggling a little bit and he’s playing quarterback, that’s not a big deal to him,” Nagy said. “For him, why isn’t it a big deal? Well, it’s not a big deal because he doesn’t care [about the criticism] and we’re going to fix it.”