Archive for the ‘Jay Cutler’ Category

Broncos WR Brandon Marshall a no show at mandatory mini-camp

June 12, 2009

The first sign of trouble is when you have unhappy players not showing up to mandatory mini-camps. Marshall was already tied to possible trade and free agency rumors with the Chicago Bears, now he is skipping a mandatory practice.

The question is will this grow into something more, and something possibly positive for the Bears.

The need for receivers is well documented and while the Bears won’t be able to Marshall this season. The thought is he could be a possibility at the end of his rookie contract.

This little story may be nothing, but it is something to follow if you’re a fan of the Chicago Bears.

Marshall was extremely productive in Denver playing with Jay Cutler and their positive relationship as teammates is well documented.

I wonder if the young Josh McDaniels is starting to prove that he is in fact over his head and is benefitting from the Patriots already strong offense.

Brandon Marshall skips mandatory mini-camp day one

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What did the Bears give up for Jay Cutler?

April 17, 2009

So I was browsing through the internets, invented by Al Gore and came across something very inspirational for this blog post. Yes friends it’s more Jay Cutler trade analysis and it’s work I didn’t have to do as so much as to google. Charlie Casserly who provide analysis on the NFL Network got me thinking, the insulting comment in one of my blogs from the Jay Cutler trade further motivated me and ask.com gave me the substance. This in turn made me put finger tip to key board and start running off at the mouth yet again on a topic that has likely been blogged about and hammered on since the minute the trade went down.

So the question is what exactly did the Bears give up for Jay Cutler? Simple really, one and a half players based on the statistical odds of first round and third round draft picks making it in the NFL. The percentages extremely favor the Bears and no talking head former jock at ESPN is going to change the facts. So what are the facts? Pretty startling really if you’re a Denver Broncos fan.

Starting with third round draft picks, of which less than 20% succeed in the NFL. Never mind whether or not they start or go on to Pro Bowls or anything in between 80% of will be out of the league during the time frame that Jay Cutler is quarterback of the Chicago Bears.

Moving on to first round draft picks, according to the stats I researched for another blog I’m about to post about 47% have successful NFL careers. Less than half of those selected in the first round play for more than the average career length of five years. So of the two draft picks the Bears forked over to the Broncos, one of those players will have a successful NFL career. Plus the Kyle Orton who may not start for the Broncos and be just a stop gap for a QB they draft this year or next or he may even move on to a different team in his free agency year of 2010.

So realistically the Denver Broncos wound up with one sure fire player who will wind up as good as or on the same level as Jay Cutler. The other two draft picks they received from the Bears will likely flop based on the statistics of flops and failures alone. Which is remarkable in and of itself and truly shows exactly how over valued draft picks are compared to proven players at this point of the season.

The level of hype surrounding the NFL draft right now is so huge that it could easily fill up the largest stadium in the NFL with all of it’s hot air. By proxy most NFL analysts have overvalued the draft picks that the Bears have given up because they are sucked into the hype of it. Sure you have to build your team through the draft, sure the Broncos could wind up with two players from the draft picks the Bears sent over that go on to have long successful NFL careers.

In the end though the odds significantly favor Jerry Angelo. That is why Angelo most likely saved his job in Chicago and most definitely changed his legacy for the better in city of big shoulders.

NFL Network Analysis: Jay Cutler Trade

April 4, 2009

Further reveiwing what league experts are saying about the Jay Cutler deal we come to coverage from the NFL Network. Total Access kicked off two days of essentially round the clock Cutler trade coverage.
Former NFL GM Charlie Casserly steps up to the plate to diagnose the Cutler trade first and give his take on how it benefits the Chicago Bears.

Casserly is most famous for his years with the Washington Redskins where he uncovered two of the original members of the Redskins’ famed offensive line known as “the Hogs”. From there Casserly took over as a GM and sustained Washington’s excellent up to the mid 90s. From there Casserly took over the Houston Texans were he scouted and drafted five future Pro Bowl players. Among them WR Andre Johnson, DE Mario Williams, LB DeMarco Ryans.

Casserly starts out his analysis with how the Bears offered up the best deal with two number one draft picks and the best QB option for the Broncos. His take is that Kyle Orton was a good QB for the first year and he has had some success in the NFL. Casserly says “If I’m the Chicago Bears I’m ecstatic I made this deal if I was Chicago I would have made the deal because it’s hard to get a quarterback at this level in Jay Cutler. A guy who came into the league that’s proven he can play. He’s young, he’s had success in the league, it’s hard to find this guy.”

Mike Mayock then steps up to give his take of the ramifications and impact that Cutler will have on the Bears’ offense and the strategy that takes shape with a QB like Cutler in the fold.

Mayock states “I feel like Jerry Angelo and Lovie Smith were on a short leash, this tells us that the need to win now.” “What I look at is their remaining draft picks and they have 49 and 99th overall selections. The hope is that one of the big time wide receivers slides to them at 49 a Hakeem Nick, Britt or Robiskie. That way they can maybe address the WR position via the draft instead of in free agency. They play some pretty good defense still in Chicago (run defense was one of the best in the league). It’s up to Ron Turner to expand his offense and to take advantage of what this kid does which is get the football down the field vertically.”

Bob Papa interjects with his analysis about the trade saying “When you take a look at this division and you take a look at the problems that Green Bay has from last year, and they’re switching to the 3-4, you still have the quarterback question when it comes the Minnesota Vikings and the Lions they have a lot of work ahead of them. Chicago was right into that playoff race late into the season last year. I think this is something that can put them over the top. The have a good running game they’ve added Orlando Pace they’ve got a talented young tight end that’s gonna help the quarterback pick up the offense, they can do some things with (Greg) Olson. So I think the Chicago Bears if they can tidy up the defense get some help at the safety position can be that gets into the post season by winning their division.”

Mike Mayock states while talking to Deion Sanders (does anyone wants Deion’s take really?) that ” I’m big on franchise quarterbacks and I think Denver was CRAZY to let him go.”

Moving into the second day of the coverage of the biggest trade in the history of the franchise of the Monsters of the Midway.

The NFL Network lines up Bears cam and brings in Jay Cutler for one of his first official interviews after his introduction as the newest member of the Chicago Bears.

Rich Eisen asks for Cutler’s emotions after this big trade:

Cutler says, “It’s been some ups and down for the last three of four weeks. You know (I’m) a little relieved, I’m a little sad to be leaving my teammates in Denver. But it’s a new chapter, I couldn’t be more excited to be in Chicago, and to be a Chicago Bear.”

Eisen adds if you could tell the kid growing up (meaning Cutler) that he was going to be future quarterback of the Chicago Bears.

“I think it would have been a dream come true Cutler adds, I was a little bit shocked that I got the call, because I didn’t really think it was going to be a possibility. You hope it is but you try to be realistic to not put yourself up for that that kind of disappointment (meaning if the trade did not happen) it worked out well for me.”

Cutler goes on to quietly wax poetic about the situation over the last month. He doesn’t really want to go and bad mouth the Broncos by dispelling rumors that surfaced during this whole ordeal. Some people may look at it as dodging a question, but to me if Cutler publicly dispels the rumor he starts a he said they said back and forth which further ignites the controversy. Cutler instead decides to move forward on to his career with the Chicago Bears, rather than explain himself and leave it open to interpretation by the media and fans as to what exactly went down.

Eisen goes on to ask about the “bad publicity” and whether or not Cutler wil have to address it moving forward with the Bears.

“Absolutely I think this city is happy but they’re a little bit wary of what kind of quarterback they got. I’ve gotta earn the respect and trust of my teammates first and foremost and that’s the first thing that’s gotta happen. They have to trust me and what I can do for them as their quarterback they have to believe in me and trust me that I can get the job done as their quarterback.”

Cutler talks about the new teammates that called him, Urlacher called, Earl Bennett called, Greg Olson called and that a lot of his teammates were there at the press conference. They are excited about the possibility of what we can do going forward.”

Brandon Marshall is brought on to talk about Jay Cutler and the trade and one of the key quotes he makes is” Jay Cutler is a great quarterback and a great friend. He was a great locker room guy and I’m sad to see him go.”

The NFL Network then goes to it’s panel that includes Charles Davis, Bob Papa, and Mike Mayock. They always seem to lead off their conversations with Mayock.

“I really believe it’s the perfect storm for both him (Cutler) and the Bears. What they’d like to do in a city where there’s an awful lot of wind and weather is have a big armed quarterback who can get the ball vertically down the field to talented wide receivers like Devin Hester a great tight end like Greg Olson who could emerge as another deep threat.” Then in true Mike Mayock fashion he goes to the coaches tape (the behind the line of scrimmage angle) to show what he liked about Cutler when he was in college and then coaches tape from this season where he’ll compare and contrast the differences in what he like about Cutler.

The play Mayock goes to show is a fourth and 12 play against Arkansas game on the line less than two minutes left, where he stands in the pocket and flat footed (not stepping into the throw) he drives the ball down the field over the head of a linebacker and in between two defenders, while simultaneously getting smacked in the face by an oncoming linebacker. “Fourth and 12 while getting smacked in the face and he knows it, he delivers the football flat footed, I fell in love with that play” Mayock says the octave level in his voice changing with excitement.

“Later on same drive, flat-footed, this guy’s got more hip torque than anybody else since John Elway. They beat a team they should have never beat in Arkansas.”

“This last season on the run look at the accuracy he drops it in over Schefler’s shoulder, big play on the run without a problem. Again he has an awful lot of confidence in his ability, watch him feel pressure up the field eyes down the field, never look down delivers the football touchdown. That’s a huge play very few quarterbacks in the league can make. Again Cutler the vision bracket coverage (four man end-zone defenders) it’s not there right now, eyes down field, feel pressure, step up and again that’s a tight window right there that he threw the football into. This is a third and 12 with two minutes left I don’t think (this route) is open I wouldn’t want him to throw the football there, but somehow he puts it on him (the pass) and the one thing I have to say to be honest in my overview is that he threw the ball up for grabs to often in college and he has a little bit of that gun-slinger attitude in the pros.”

Charles Davis interjects “that that part of holding the ball and not throwing it up for grabs comes with maturity and given that he’s been in the league for only three years, two as a starter he will get better. Weather late in the season with Forte and the running game and this guy with the arm, this is Bears football with the opportunity to make big plays. I think they’ll go out and get another wide receiver somewhere along the lines to take the pressure off of Devin Hester being the number one wide receiver its nothing but an upside for Chicago in the immediate future. I said I don’t think this makes them a Super Bowl team this year, but later on down the line if they keep adding the pieces and with Orlando Pace he doesn’t hurt one bit.”

Bob Papas wraps up the panelist analysis with “Well you know it’s interesting watching Mike’s break down of what he can do physically and you look what the Bears have they don’t have a Brandon Marshall and an Eddie Royal but with what they do have he can make it better get better production out of them. The thing that’s really impressive is that he got all that done all that production last year done with no running game. He’s now going to be with a team that pounds the ball they’re going to be able to control the football. I think the sky is the limit for Jay Cutler.”

That last quote would seem to the quote that makes this the deal of a lifetime for Chicago Bears fans. Cutler has all the tools and by all reports from media people talking to Mike Shannahan to talk to Cutler’s teammates, he is a consummate professional who can be a leader and a franchise quarterback. The important aspect being franchise, because it takes more than a strong arm, great vision, physical talents and pocket awareness, it take the ability to be the face of the franchise. The leader of the team and the organization, cementing his legacy as what could be the greatest quarterback in the history of the Chicago Bears franchise.

Phil Simms talks about the Jay Cutler trade

April 3, 2009

Beginning our extended wall to wall coverage of the Jay Cutler trade and getting expert opinion and analysis on the trade and it’s impact. We’ll gather opinions from around the league and multiple media sources and compile them all into this blog.

The first bit of information we get is from one of the most respected analysts in the league and on TV. Former New York Giants and CBS analyst Phil Simms. If anyone is going to give a fair assessment it will be Simms because he’s covered AFC games for CBS for quite a number of years now. Simms has seen Cutler first hand and dealt with the Broncos and Mike Shannahan .

Simms felt after seeing Cutler at Vanderbilt that he was the best player available in the draft. He still wonders to this day why people even argue this point between Leinart, Young and Cutler, because Cutler clearly had all the tools. Cutler has proven himself behind two QBs who came from two bigger programs and had a ton more respect coming out of college. Not coincidentally though the NFL always has a way of evening things out.

Simms brought up what has been talked about regarding Cutler’s nimbleness in the pocket, his athletic ability to extend the play and then how great he is at throwing on the run. This is one of Cutler’s advantages is that with his arm strength he can still make throws while on the run, he doesn’t need to reset his feet and then throw he can just flick his wrist to a receiver who make deek a CB who has his eyes on Cutler and then get open. This will be specifically beneficial to Devin Hester who will be able to use his speed and elusiveness to get open down the field if Cutler is flushed from the pocket.

Simms talked about how Cutler led a great offense with an awful defense and helped his team be successful. The offense the Broncos had was second in the league and none of that was a result of pure passing. Cutler’s passing helped by the running game was still averaging 4.5 yards a rush. When the Broncos’ defense gave up less than 21 points per game Cutler was 13-1 as the starter, and the Bears defense for all it’s shortcomings gave up less than 21 points eight times last season, translating to what would be eight wins for the Bears. From there that would translate to eight likely victories with Cutler possible pushing the Bears over the top in two to four more games, giving the Bears at least a Wild Card berth.

While Simms has not seen a lot of the Bears’ games (covering the AFC) the game he has seen he felt that the offense usually played well enough to win, but that it was the defense that struggled. Most Bears fans would agree with that assessment about the defense which struggled while on the field in pre-season too.

Simms went on to talk about whether or not his attitude would effect things coming into the Chicago Bears. All the drama coming from Denver to Chicago and the two week long soap opera, and Simms was just as adamant about Cutler’s make up as he was his talent. Simms stated that he was still on the Cutler band wagon and that this was a great trade for the Bears. He didn’t understand why anyone would give up a franchise QB. You draft a guy like Mathew Stafford, in hopes that he BECOMES Jay Cutler. Well with Cutler you already have a proven product, and talent. That proven commodity that you hope you get when you draft. Plus you look at the hit and miss parts of first round draft picks and it really opens your eyes.

Simms brought up his conversations with Mike Shannahan and Shannahan never had anything bad to say about his QB. He never had a private conversation that said something like “well yeah he’s a great talent, great arm, good production, but he’s not a leader or a team guy. None of the coaches in Denver, none of the players ever had anything bad to say about Cutler. He was the type of professional you want your QB to be, a leader who doesn’t flinch in the face of pressure.

Simms then went on to speak of his experience of playing under Bill Parcell’s who said essentially you don’t have to be liked by everyone on the team. You don’t have to get along with everyone, your job is not to be the popular guy on the team and even if you try hard not everyone is going to like you. Your job is to be a leader of men and a leader on the field and Simms feels that Cutler has that.

Beyond the overall trade Simms spoke about the new dimension to the Bears offense Cutler brings. The play calling will change, the play design will change the receivers’ production will improve. Different scenarios will be handled better, and there will be a more open play book for the Bears to run. If the defense gets back to being extraordinary the Bears could go far into the playoffs. He already feels they are a playoff team (they were one game away from the playoffs last year).

Simms was also excited about Jerry Angelo and his statement that “if we were going to get into the Jay Cutler trade talks, we were in it to win it.” Angelo became adamant about getting a deal done and not letting this one pass him by. It’s one of the most unique situations in the history of the league when you have a franchise QB entering the prime of his career likely to be a multi-year Pro Bowl selection. Cutler is a proven QB and Simms felt that it’s going to work out great for the Bears and he didn’t really speak to any negatives coming in this deal.

It’s truly hard to argue with Simms’ assessment and I for one have a lot of respect for Simms as an analyst who does his homework knows his stuff and doesn’t run his mouth for the sake of having an opinion. The most important aspect is there is no guarantee the Bears were going to be able to get a great player from their next two draft picks.

You can find successful players in free agency and in the second to fifth rounds of the draft. Angelo has done this time and time again and has built a successful team around it. Plus with 2010 likely to be a non salary cap year the Bears could really be in a position to add to their franchise and solidify it for the next decade. We can sit here and look back at the first month of free agency (it was exactly a month of free agency before the trade happened) and be critical about Omiyale, Bullocks and Shaffer. But the bottom line is Jerry Angelo just made a move that instantly improves the Chicago Bears. He made a bold move that may go down as the most impressive trade in the history of the league.

Angelo becomes the savior of Chicago, Jay Cutler is a Chicago Bear

April 2, 2009

When no one thought it was possible, no one thought Jerry Angelo had the brass sack to get it done Angelo pulled off a major coup today on April 2nd 2009 and traded for and got QB Jay Cutler. No Bears fans it is not a misprint or a 24 hour late April Fool’s Day joke. Jay Cutler is coming to play for his childhood favorite Chicago Bears.

This is a day that one way or another will go down as an earth shattering moment in the history of the Chicago Bears. For better or worse Jerry Angelo has cemented his legacy in the Windy City. The Bears have their future franchise QB and they are now the toast of the town.

While I can wax on about the negatives, this much is clear the Bears got their man, gave up what they felt necessary to get him and they have my full support. I am on cloud nine with excitement at this move because if you’re a long suffering Bears fan you didn’t think a move like this was possible.

Turns out the move is real and the Bears got their man and according to Jon Clayton of ESPN the Bears become the instant favorite in the race for the NFC North. The Bears are now assured a playoff spot with Cutler and depending how things shape up elsewhere in the league it could be playoff games in Chicago at Soldier Field, where as we know ANYTHING can happen.

In the trade the Bears give up their first round pick #18 overall, their first round pick in 2010 their third round pick this year and QB Kyle Orton. In return the Bears receive Cutler and a fifth round pick from the Denver Broncos.

Cutler instantly becomes one of the best QBs in the NFC based on stats alone and youth and potential ahead of him. He arguably is now the most talented QB with potential to be great because of his rocket arm and his level of production. Regardless of my previous feelings on the matter, I can say that Cutler does have a world of potential and some production to back it up.

Here is hoping that Cutler can be the best quarterback in the history of the Chicago Bears.

Let the hypervenelating begin, Jay Cutler on the trading block

March 31, 2009

It’s official the Denver Broncos are offering up QB Jay Cutler on the open trading market. It’s official Bears fans have reached a new level of excitement typically reserved for possible Super Bowl aspirations.

This just in, the April fool’s joke will be a day early as the Bears will be very unlikely to make a move for Cutler. Shocking to Bears fans everywhere I know but the amount of disgust and disdain Jerry Angelo is about to have heaped upon him even before Cutler is traded to another team and AFTER he is traded to another team will be quite unfair and despicable in it’s scale and deep rooted hatred.

The level of bitterness has already been shown this off-season, even before Cutler was officially on the market. The level of venom spewed Angelo’s way in the next month will be on another level.

But the level of hypocrisy shown by Bears fans will come out as well. Most Bears fans won’t admit that Aaron Rodgers is essentially at the same level of talent as Jay Cutler, nor will they admit their nearly identical seasons.

Comp Att % Att/G Yds AYPC AYPG TDs INTs RTG
A. Rodgers 341 536 63.6 33.5 4,038 7.5 252.4 28 13 93.8
J. Cutler 384 616 62.3 38.5 4,526 7.3 282.9 25 18 89.0

Yet Bears fans would not mortgage their future if Aaron Rodgers were on the trading block. They wither away in disgust with the thought that Aaron Rodgers is somehow a franchise QB, is somehow one of the top QBs in the league. No way do the Packers have a QB capable of yet another largely productive career.

Cutler is a once in a decade QB, on the level of….wait what Scott Mitchell? That couldn’t be possible, or is it? Scott Mitchell had a big arm and a majorly successful season as well. 1995 Mitchell turned in this season with the Detroit Lions.
comp att % yds TDs AYPC AYPG INT
S. Mitchell 346 583 59.3 4338 32 12.5 271 12

So Chicago Bears fans want to mortgage their future for a player that has been as productive as Aaron Rodgers and Scott Mitchell. Trade #18 our second rounder and a third for Cutler? What would you give up to land Cutler?

Me personally I’ll stick with Orton and see how thing pan out for him and then go in a different direction in 2010. Should the Bears shock the world however and trade for and land Cutler, he will have my full support and hope for a multiple Pro-Bowl appearance level career.

Updated: Reports are already surfacing that the Bears are entered in to the Jay Cutler sweepstakes. I support the move by the franchise to make the call and attempt to get a deal done. I ask though at what price? Yes I feel Cutler could make the Chicago Bears a better team, but no I don’t feel like he has the potential to put up a stat line on par with some of the great ones Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Kurt Warner or you could go back to the good to great ones from 80s and 90s. Cutler doesn’t have the mental make up to be on a level with those guys, otherwise he wouldn’t be whining about the current situation, and the Broncos wouldn’t be so willing to cut ties.

We have to ask ourselves many different questions about Cutler, is he more than just a rocket arm and a 4,500 yard passing season? His TDs to INT stats from last year are a cause for concern, his win-loss record is a concern and the way he folds up like a cheap cot in the face of Phillip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers is of even greater concern. To me Cutler could be a good QB maybe on the same level of what Jake Delhomme and Matt Hasselback have been.

But to be that QB that has the mental make up to be great, at this point in time Cutler has not shown even an inkling of that type of intelligence or that type of intangible. He is still an unknown quantity who could come at a very high price.

There is a certain level of buyer beware that you notice upon further examination of Cutler’s resume and credentials.