In today’s Chicago Tribune (wait, people still read newspapers?), David Haugh, who covers the Bears, warns Jay Cutler may be too honest for his own good with the media following Saturday’s disappointing showing against Buffalo.
In an offseason and training camp where the media has done nothing short of a providing the former Bronco with a reach-around, it’s refreshing to see someone pump the breaks on the Jay Cutler Messianic talk.
Cutler insinuated Devin Hester could have done more to prevent an interception and that the transformed wide receiver could “learn from it.” Haugh wrote:
“The explanation sounded more like an excuse…Off his back leg, Cutler made a terrible throw and floated the ball 40 yards downfield – and it would have been nice to hear him say that too. Forget fans and media; it would have been good for Bears players to see their new leader take sole responsibility for his mistake, even if Hester, in part, had erred too.”
Sure Hester could have tried harder to prevent Buffalo’s Leodis McKelvin interception – and you’d think being a former cornerback he’d know how to – but Cutler didn’t have to tell the media that. He could have used it as an opportunity to remind the Chicago public, that he is indeed human and interceptions will happen. He didn’t. He blamed a teammate.
Now, Kyle Orton sucks. Bears fans know this. And my friends who went to Purdue tell me they know this too – and knew it far before I did. But Orton was beloved by teammates. So much so, some Bears veterans were unhappy with the trade. That’s right, The Bearded One, despite all his ineptitudes as a NFL quarterback, had teammates so devoted to him, the acquisition of a 24-year old Pro Bowl quarterback was considered a blow to team chemistry.
Orton won – something Cutler has struggled with. But the Bears won in spite of Orton’s play. Not because of it. Cutler will win games for the Bears. The big part now is, can he win over his teammates?
Brian Urlacher allegedly called Cutler a “pussy.” He denies it. Whether it happened or not, is irrelevant. There’s still a notion that some Bears’ vets are going to make Cutler earn their respect rather than bow to his feet upon arrival.
No one called Orton a pussy. He played on a gimpy, bloody ankle that Curt Schilling thought was impressive. But what you lack in the natural aspects of quarterbacking – say like accuracy and decision-making – you have to make up in the intangible areas, such as leadership.
If Orton threw an interception, he owned up to it. He said it was his fault, whether or not it was. (And more often than not, it was.)
There’s nothing Cutler can’t do with a football in his hand. He can fit it into a rat’s ear from 70 yards away they say. He has an arm and physical gifts Orton only fantasizes about in bed.
Inexplicably, 29.3 percent of nearly 8,000 readers polled by the Tribune graded Cutler a F for his preseason performance under the tag: “F – Give me Kyle Orton back.”
Ridiculous isn’t it. Especially considering the former PUke threw three interceptions in his Broncos debut.
A city clamoring – begging – for a franchise quarterback finally has one and seems all but ready to turn on him. Forgive Chicago, it’s been something like 60 years since they’ve had a quarterback. The city doesn’t know how to handle one.
Almost one-third of readers polled asked for the gutsy Kyle Orton back. He, being the quarterback most likely to lose his job to a spleenless Chris Simms. But see that works for Bears fans. The team has been using other team’s QB garbage for decades. Do the names Rick Mirer and Chad Hutchinson ring a bell?