The Bears came away convinced they have a quarterback who could impact their future after Monday's 20-17 loss to the Minnesota Vikings, even if their new starter's key fourth-quarter interception led to the defeat.
"He just has a very quiet confidence about him," Bears guard Kyle Long said. "His preparation is obvious. He knows all the checks. He knows how to calm down a group of fat guys out there that are frantic."
Most important, Trubisky showed he knew the first rule of quarterbacking by taking blame from teammates.
"You just feel like it's your fault, that you could have done more to help our team win," Trubisky said. "I just felt like it was on me. They know I'm going to go back to work. I'm going to fix my mistakes, and I'm going to watch this film and be critical of myself. They know I'm going to get better. I appreciate them having faith in me and having my back, but yeah, I feel like it's on me."
Trubisky's admission came after a 12-for-25 effort for 128 yards with a touchdown and the interception. He also lost the ball on a sack and the two turnovers set up six Vikings points.
"I thought he was really good," tight end Zach Miller said. "He extended plays for us, made plays downfield, made plays with his legs, put us in position to win that game."
Trubisky threw his 20-yard touchdown pass to Miller. And it was also Miller who Trubisky targeted when he threw an interception to Minnesota's Harrison Smith while he tried to roll right and improvise.
"I have a lot of faith in my receivers out there and Zach (Miller)," Trubisky said. "I was just trying to do too much outside of what I need to do. I just need to know the situation and throw the ball away and go play. I just forced one. Can't do that, can't put my team in that situation."
Trubisky's mobility was apparent all night in an offense that took on a drastically different look than the style of attack the Bears displayed when Mike Glennon started. What was the same was turnovers killing the Bears, just as when Glennon led them to a 1-3 first quarter of the season.
Trubisky ran for 22 yards on the night and early in the game. Especially early, he involved wide receivers in the passing game with six completions for 73 yards. This was a problem for the offense when Glennon was at quarterback.
Trubisky seemed to thrive on the excitement in the stadium over his debut, although the Bears couldn't manage a touchdown in the first half despite a big field-position edge.
"He was calm, he was cool," wide receiver Kendall Wright said. "We can't put him in those positions. We had plenty of opportunities to win that game before the last few minutes. We had plenty of chances in that game to win it early on."
Head coach John Fox seemed satisfied with the leadership ability he saw in Trubisky, as well as the skills.
"I think our guys feel it," Fox said. "They feel his presence. He scrambled for a first down. They were able to do some different things with him as far as attacking the corner. Those things will grow with time."
Fox felt it, as well.
"He's got what it takes," Fox said. "There's no doubt in my mind. For a first game, I go back to watching guys like (Joe) Montana in his first game. I've seen a few of them. I'm not making comparisons at this point. But he will do nothing but get better."
--Linebacker John Timu suffered a knee injury and left the game in the second half. More will be known on the status of Timu later in the week. Losing Timu was a big blow to the defense as he was playing for suspended starter Danny Trevathan, and was calling defensive signals. It left Christian Jones calling signals, and when Jonathan Anderson came on the field as Timu's replacement, the Vikings began working the short passing game and picking at Bears linebackers. Trevathan returns to his regular spot this week, but a lengthy injury for Timu further depletes a thin roster spot. The Bears have Jerrell Freeman (pectoral muscle) on injured reserve and Nick Kwiatkoski is week-to-week with a pectoral injury.
In addition, linebacker Willie Young did not play or practice on Friday and Saturday because of a triceps injury that requires surgery. He was placed on injured reserve Tuesday. Without Young, Leonard Floyd took 93 percent of the snaps and Pernell McFee had 64 percent, while Sam Acho was on for 41 percent.
--Cornerback Marcus Cooper (back) missed the game with an injury suffered on Saturday in practice. His status for this week's game with Baltimore is uncertain. Cooper had been splitting time in the lineup with cornerbacks Prince Amukamara and Kyle Fuller.
REPORT CARD VS. VIKINGS
--PASSING OFFENSE: C-minus - The late-game interception and a 60.1 passer rating ruined what might have been an otherwise better debut for Mitchell Trubisky. He committed the mistake almost all young passers do and took it upon himself to throw into too tight of a window when it didn't need to be done. Receivers dropped three balls and penalties bogged down the passing game in general. Trubisky started out looking sharp on timing passes, and hit on seven of his first nine passes. But then as he moved more and tried to go downfield more, his numbers tailed off to five completions in his final 16 attempts.
--RUSHING OFFENSE: C-plus - Again penalties proved big, and not all on the offensive line. Wide receiver Markus Wheaton wiped out a TD with an open-field hold that Jordan Howard didn't even need to break off a 42-yard scoring run. Howard was running strong on outside zone plays, but when the Bears turned inside they normally hit a wall. Tarik Cohen had his worst overall game with 13 yards rushing and minus-6 yards receiving.
--PASS DEFENSE: B-minus - The pass rush had to play two different types of passers because Case Keenum was far more mobile than injured starter Sam Bradford. They still did a respectable job of keeping Keenum from doing big damage down the field or outside on rollout or bootleg passes. Overall, holding Minnesota's dangerous wide receiver group to 57 yards receiving is a strong day even without - once again - an interception.
--RUSH DEFENSE: C-plus - Allowing a season-long 58-yard TD run to Jerick McKinnon after pulling within 10-9 was a rare misstep by the Bears' defensive front, as they failed at gap control. Lacking both John Timu and starter Danny Trevathan at linebacker was a key problem.
--SPECIAL TEAMS: B - The fake punt execution was superb on the part of punter Pat O'Donnell and running back Benny Cunningham. O'Donnell's 32.3-yard and 43.9-yard gross punting averages were more the result of trying to place the Vikings deep in their own territory. He wasn't kicking for distance. Then again, he missed on a few tries to pin them deep and punted into the end zone. Cohen was pulled on the final Bears punt return after he'd been running in circles and trying to break punts for big gainers when there were opportunities for yardage that he passed up. He also misjudged a punt and opted to signal for a fair catch on another punt when he could have gained yardage.
--COACHING: C-minus - More was expected from coordinator Dowell Loggains in terms of how he used Trubisky. Although the plan let Trubisky be mobile, it didn't let him try to be a passer enough. There was too much bootlegging and moving to throw, and the decisive interception came on a play that's a danger with such plays - a throwback against the grain. The worst decision by Loggains was leaving Trubisky in a naked backfield at his own 20 when they had been successful keeping a back in for extra blocking much of the night. They paid for this with a sack and lost fumble, resulting in a Vikings field goal. Special teams coach Jeff Rodgers had ideal timing for springing the fake punt. The execution was flawless - Cunningham caught a pass over the middle from a punter better than many of the Bears wide receivers caught passes over the middle from Trubisky. Fox and the staff looked silly on a delay of game penalty after they had called a timeout to prevent one. They tried blaming officials, but if everything had been made clear to players in advance there would never have been so much confusion.