Chicago Bears Countdown to Kickoff: 10 Days with Mitchell Trubisky

Chicago Bears, Mitchell Trubisky
Chicago Bears, Mitchell Trubisky / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
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A week from today, the NFL officially returns with the first regular season contest, where the defending Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs will face off against the Detroit Lions. However, Bears fans will have to wait a little while longer to see their team take the field against the Green Bay Packers during the first Sunday of the season. To celebrate, today's installment of Chicago Bears Countdown to Kickoff brings us to the life and career of the best player in franchise history to don the number 10, quarterback Mitchell Trubisky.

Mitchell Trubisky goes from Mr. Football to Chicago Bears No. 2 overall selection

Growing up in the greater Cleveland, Ohio area, Mitchell Trubisky's athletic career truly began at Mentor High School, where the future Chicago Bear started at quarterback in each of his final three seasons. Leading his team to a 30-8 cumulative record, Trubisky became a highly touted prospect and received several offers from the nation's top collegiate programs, including Alabama, Ohio State, and North Carolina.

Before his senior season, Trubisky was able to commit to play for the Tar Heels, but his focus remained on the ensuing campaign. There, the quarterback shined and was awarded Mr. Football for the state of Ohio, finishing the year with nearly 2,500 passing yards and 28 touchdowns. His high school career, which included over 10,600 total yards and 125 total touchdowns, is regarded as one of the best by a quarterback in Ohio's history.

With his high school career over, Trubisky joined North Carolina ahead of the 2014 season, where he served as a redshirt freshman backup quarterback. However, he was able to find some playing time throughout the season, finishing with 459 yards, five touchdowns, and four interceptions on 42 completions over 78 attempts.

The next year, Trubisky again served as a backup but looked extremely efficient when playing in relief of the team's starter. He ended the year with an impressive 85% completion rate across appearances in nine games, where he logged 555 yards, six touchdowns, and zero interceptions.

After showing tremendous improvement within Larry Fedora's offensive system, Trubisky was named the full-time starter heading into his junior campaign. Throughout the season, he proved to be a relatively efficient player who protected the ball and had solid athletic intangibles to play with. Throughout a season that saw the former Mr. Ohio finish with over 4,000 total yards and 35 total touchdowns, Trubisky slowly became a real candidate to leave school early after gaining serious NFL Draft buzz.

Nevertheless, Trubisky led the Tar Heels to an 8-4 record, qualifying to play in the ensuing Sun Bowl, where they faced off against the Stanford Cardinals and a formidable defense led by Solomon Thomas. Unfortunately, the defense got the better of Trubisky, who matched two touchdowns with two interceptions, and UNC lost by just two points. Thomas was named the MVP of the Bowl game.

Following the post-season loss, Trubisky elected to forgo his senior season and enter the 2017 NFL Draft. Despite not receiving a lot of postseason recognition for his junior campaign, Trubisky quickly ascended quarterback boards throughout the draft process and entered the draft as one of, if not the highest-ranked quarterback by several draft websites and outlets.

Accordingly, by the time of the actual event, the Chicago Bears were willing to move up one spot, from the third to second overall pick, to secure their ability to select the first quarterback off the board (the Cleveland Browns, who were a quarterback-needy team, selected Myles Garrett with the first overall pick).

Chicago Bears, Mitchell Trubisky
Chicago Bears, Mitchell Trubisky / Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Bears gave the San Francisco 49ers two third-round picks, one in 2017 and one the year after, and a fourth-round pick that year in order to move up to select Trubisky with the second overall pick (the 49ers added Soloman Thomas with the pick the team received in return). Despite losing several picks in the trade, the Bears still found value in the later rounds, specifically in Eddie Jackson and Tarik Cohen.