Ex-Bears QB Justin Fields grateful for how Ryan Poles handled his trade: 'Shoutout to Poles'

Organized Team Activities are beginning around the NFL, and in Pittsburgh the Steelers' OTAs began with a determined Justin Fields.

The former Bears quarterback was adamant he had not reached his ceiling yet, but among his comments he made time to make sure he spoke on how grateful he was.

Specifically, Fields was grateful to the Bears for trading him to a place where he not only could compete for a starting job but also to a place he preferred.

"Shoutout to Poles," Fields told reporters during Steelers' OTAs on Tuesday. "We communicated to him through my agent, and I told him where I wanted to be and this was a place I wanted to be."

As a Bear, Fields had a 10-28 record since 2021 as a starter. His tenure with the Bears also included two coaching staffs and a roster overhaul that left him without consistent weapons to work with.

However, Fields still struggled as a passer in his third year, prompting the Bears to trade Fields to the Steelers for a conditional 2025 NFL Draft pick.

Back at the 2024 NFL Combine, Poles said he wanted to do right by Fields regardless of the outcome.

"If we go down that road, I want to do right by Justin," Poles said at the NFL Combine on Feb. 27. "No one wants to live in gray. I know that's uncomfortable. I wouldn't want to be in that situation either. So, we'll gather the information, we'll move as quickly as possible. We're not going to be in a rush, and see what presents itself and what's best for the organization."

Not only did Poles keep his promise, but he followed through. He sent Fields to Pittsburgh where he will compete with Russell Wilson for the starting quarterback job.

Poles reportedly turned down trade offers with more draft capital to send Fields to the Steelers, too. The outcome isn't what Fields, or Chicago Bears fans, wanted, but the end result set up every party involved for success. 

"He honored that," Fields said. "I appreciate him for that and glad he was able to put me in a spot where I wanted to be at."


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