Caleb Williams Confident in Chicago Bears Amid High Expectations: ‘We’re Going To Be Pretty Damn Good’

    Caleb Williams spoke about his development through minicamp as the Bears enter the 2024 season with high expectations.

    Ever since the Chicago Bears completed their offseason major offseason additions with Caleb Williams and their 2024 NFL Draft class, the hype for the team going forward has not calmed down.

    Now, Williams is sharing his confidence in the team’s ability to meet, if not exceed, those expectations.

    Caleb Williams, Bears Facing Immense Expectations

    Heading into 2024, the Bears have lofty goals. A big reason why has been their offseason, which included the selection of their crown jewel, Williams, to replace the departed Justin Fields.

    In addition to Williams, the Bears added Rome Odunze with the ninth overall selection, traded for Keenan Allen, and signed D’Andre Swift, turning the heat up on Williams going into his rookie season. It’s simple — the Bears want to have their first-ever 4,000 yard passer and have given him the tools to achieve that mark.

    It isn’t just the offense, either. Late in 2023, the Bears defense saw an uptick that laid the foundation for them becoming one of the better groups in the NFL. They boasted the No. 1 rushing defense in the league, allowing a total of just 1,468 yards. This included a stretch of allowing just four rushing touchdowns from Weeks 4-11.

    In addition to the run defense, the Bears also tied the San Francisco 49ers for a league- high 22 interceptions and tied for fifth in total takeaways with 28. Some key returning players for the unit include cornerback Jaylon Johnson and EDGE Montez Sweat.

    With the strides they made on defense last season, coupled with the huge improvements they have made offensively, the Bears enter 2024 with far greater aspirations than in their previous two seasons under head coach Matt Eberflus.

    Williams, however, is fully aware of these expectations and how a lot is riding on his performance despite his rookie status.

    “Right now we’re working with our head down and we’re building, [but] just having that moment with myself — I do it every day — to sit there and say, ‘We’re gonna be pretty damn good,'” said Williams.

    “I’ve just got to keep going, keep working and we’re all excited. It’s really important to have that mindset but also have the mindset of ‘let’s keep going, let’s keep working, let’s get after it.'”

    In short, Williams is hoping for a season similar to what C.J. Stroud enjoyed in 2023, when he won NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year while vaulting the Houston Texans back to the postseason after winning the AFC South.

    If Williams can replicate that caliber of performance, expectations will be more than met.

    Williams Opens Up About His Early Progress

    While the expectations are already high, Williams is still a rookie who has to adjust to the NFL. As a result, he’s been opening up about his progress early on. “First, I ask questions,” said Williams.

    “I ask questions to Coach. I ask about my progression, I ask where he wants me to be, where I should be, and then obviously I have my own goal set for myself and that’s to be perfect.”

    “Obviously you strive for something like that and you don’t ever reach it, but you keep striving for it,” said Williams. “Whether it’s a day that I like or a day that I don’t, there’s always good and bad in it, so just finding my balance and reaching and striving for my goal.”

    Williams also spoke about his learning experiences with his cadence. “Just finding the green line, right in the middle of where we need it so everybody can be on the same page,” said Williams.

    While there’s progress to be made for any rookie, Williams has still made sure to shine in practices.

    A factor in Williams’ development has been the fact he’s played exclusively against the team’s first-team defense. “I think that Caleb is a talent, a really good talent,” said Eberflus.

    “His game will go to where it needs to be. I want him to see that in front of him. The windows closing, the variation of what we do on defense. I want him to see that day in day out so that when he gets to play somebody else, it’ll look okay.”

    With all of the talent the Bears acquired in the offseason, who they return, and how the team is approaching his development, Williams is in a rare spot to succeed immediately, unlike most quarterbacks taken as highly as he was.

    Williams’ First Training Camp Will Be on Full Display on Hard Knocks

    With already very high expectations, the notch got turned up to the max when it was announced the team would be featured on HBO’s training camp edition of Hard Knocks for the 2024 season. The Bears and Williams will be in the biggest spotlight, giving them the floor to either take advantage of it or falter.

    The entire NFL world will get an in-depth look into the progress and development of Williams as he goes through the ups and downs of being a rookie, especially at the quarterback position.

    “I believe that NFL Films, HBO does an outstanding job about getting the message out about the team,” said Eberflus. “[There’s] excitement. I think they were excited about it. We’ve got a good thing going here.”

    “It shows that we’ve got something brewing here,” said linebacker Tremaine Edmunds. “Everyone wants to see what’s going on.”

    However, while many teams despise Hard Knocks’ presence — believing it can be a distraction — the Bears are embracing it. As a result, the Williams hype could be in a position to skyrocket once again if he performs as well as he can.

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