Justin Fields

Which player has impacted Justin Fields the most? Here's what Fields had to say

When Justin Fields was asked which teammate of his has the made the biggest impact on him, his answer didn't disappoint.

NBC Universal, Inc.

Justin Fields has a lot of responsibility on his plate.

Through two seasons in the NFL, he's expected to take on the Bears' franchise signal caller role with aplomb; he has the responsibility of being the Bears' leader at 24-years-old. All of Chicago listens when he talks.

Luckily for Fields, he has teammates around him to help and support him through his expectations. Alleviate the pressure, be a sound board and encourage Fields and his belief in himself.

Who has had the biggest impact on Fields?

"I would say Darnell Mooney," Fields said on The Q with Quincy Avery.

"Not really many people know his story," Fields said. "He went to Tulane, late round pick. Came in, had a pretty good rookie year."

Mooney's story is significant. The Tulane receiver was drafted by the Bears in the fifth-round of the 2020 NFL draft. He stepped in immediately, recording 631 receiving yards and four touchdowns --- a solid rookie season for a Day 3 draft pick.

His sophomore season, Mooney exploded. He recorded over 1,000 receiving yards and another four touchdowns as the understudy to Allen Robinson. Mooney immediately stepped into a larger role in the Bears' offense.

Unfortunately, that became his kryptonite during his third season.

Mooney failed to record over 500 receiving yards in 2023, playing an underwhelming No. 1 option in the passing game. Near the season's end, he broke his ankle, ending his season and forcing him into a prolonged rehab. He awaits extension talks from his rookie contract as he navigates into his fourth season, too.

As Fields mentioned, Mooney's work ethic is widely similar to his quarterback's. The Athletic wrote a feature story on Mooney during the 2022 offseason, writing about Mooney running routes at Halas Hall past midnight, and using his first NFL paycheck to buy two JUGS machines for his house in Chicago and his high school in Alabama.

Fields has a similar work ethic. He's "one of those early guys, one of those late evening guys," to quote Tremaine Edmunds from an interview with NFL Network. Mooney and Fields share the same love for the game, making their connection easy.

"The moment I got there, we were just automatically cool," Fields said. "I could just tell how he loved the game, his work ethic, and just everything he puts into this game. You name it, he's got it.

"Our friendship has grown a crazy amount since my rookie year."

Click here to follow the Under Center Podcast.

Contact Us