Arkush: Bears new QB Fields says epilepsy has never affected his playing

  • The Bears top draft pick and newest quarterback Justin Fields says his epilepsy was never a factor. His college coach Ohio State's Ryan Day says "Justin was really professional and mature about it.You know, he took his medicine and we never really had an issue."

    The Bears top draft pick and newest quarterback Justin Fields says his epilepsy was never a factor. His college coach Ohio State's Ryan Day says "Justin was really professional and mature about it.You know, he took his medicine and we never really had an issue." Associated Press

 
 
Updated 4/30/2021 6:30 PM

After a drive-by visit with the press Thursday night, the newest Chicago Bears grand experiment at quarterback, Justin Fields, followed his coach at Ohio State, Ryan Day, in extended conversations with local media Friday.

Among the top five quarterback prospects in this draft, there can be no argument that Fields' accomplishments in college were second only to Trevor Lawrence.

 

And yet he eventually became the fourth QB taken, the only logical explanation being recently-leaked revelations that he deals with epilepsy.

Asked how he felt about his private medical information becoming public Fields said, "It is what it is. It's a part of me; I'm not going to try to hide it. It's who I am.

"There's no reason to try to hide it. I'm going to continue to manage this and continue to play football like I've always played football."

When I asked Day if the epilepsy was ever a factor in any way for him, the OSU program or Fields, he replied simply, "I mean, we were aware of it. But Justin was really professional and mature about it.

"You know, he took his medicine and we never really had an issue."

It was also noteworthy that Day focused on how well his former QB has handled all kinds of pressure.

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"When you look at Justin, he kind of burns hot on the inside, but you can't always see it. He's pretty even keeled," Day said. "He doesn't get real emotional -- at least you can't see it from the outside. He kind of keeps it close to the vest.

"His competitive fire gets lit quickly. I know he's really anxious to get going here."

One other significant revelation was Day confirming he believes Fields is a "generational talent."

It fascinated me because a few months ago when Matt Nagy was still evaluating Mitch Trubisky, he was asked how he stacked Mitch up against Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson. Nagy said Mitch was a really good prospect while Mahomes was a "generational talent."

Should Fields approach the MVP level of Mahomes, the Bears eternal nightmare under center may finally be at an end.

What kind of guy is Fields? We'd ask his best friend but ...

"I have a French bulldog and his name is Uno," Fields said Friday. "He's definitely a big part of my life, and he's my best friend for sure. He's my guy."

• Twitter: @Hub_Arkush

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