Friday, September 21, 2012

Cutler attacks hypocritical

The attacks on Bears QB Jay Cutler during the last week have been interesting at best and hypocritical at worst.

For those not in the know, Cutler stunk it up last Thursday as he threw four interceptions and had a quarterback rating lower than Congress' approval rating as the Bears lost 23-10 in Green Bay. He also was sacked seven times and had a well-publicized altercation with his left tackle, J'Marcus Webb, shouting at him before pushing him aside as they returned to the sideline.

It was that altercation with Webb that got much of the attention, with pundits on both sides of the issue weighing in. Greg Couch at Fox Sports was perhaps the worst of the bunch, saying it was time to consider Cutler the latest of the bad QBs the Bears have had since Sid Luckman, adding that Cutler will never be the superstar he thinks he is.

Really? Just a few days before that mess in Green Bay, seemingly everyone was praising Cutler and the Bears' offense for being explosive as they led the way to a 41-21 win over the Colts in the season opener. Cutler threw for 333 yards and two touchdowns, including one to new/old teammate Brandon Marshall, who had his own breakout game with 119 yards receiving and a touchdown.

Now, we see the latest in the "what have you done for me lately" mentality in this country as he has a bad game. Wasn't we just saying he was a great QB, the best the Bears have had since Luckman? What happened to that?

Yes, we have his performance against the Packers, a game that he could have truly made a statement in with a good performance. And yes, we are wondering about him after he said on his radio show that he was "proud of his performance" last week. However, let's look at that a little more closely.

We have those seven sacks. That's the main problem with that offensive line that the Bears have that can at times be truly offensive. Anytime we see a quarterback sacked seven times, including 3.5 by Packers LB Clay Matthews in a performance that had the NFL Network guys joking that they hoped he wouldn't sack them on the sidelines, it's never a good thing. So for Cutler to yell at his tackle for not protecting him, at the guy that was charged with keeping Matthews off of him, it was justifiable. In addition, Cutler rarely threw to his big money man, Brandon Marshall, who had only two catches for 24 yards.

Plus, Colin Cowherd of ESPN had a good take on this on both his radio show and "SportsNation" in that it's mainly an image issue with Cutler. Despite his radio show (and maybe his radio show is an attempt to fix this), Cutler hasn't been the most personable guy around. Cowherd compared Cutler with Tim Tebow, who despite lackluster performances in wins and his now backup status to Mark Sanchez in New York has a great public image. Cutler, on the other hand, has been seen as standoff-ish and not a personable guy. Should that matter? Of course not.

Not does that make Cutler an elite quarterback? Considering he has yet to win anything of significance, let's play the wait and see game on this.

Now this Sunday he has a chance to redeem himself in front of a friendly Soldier Field crowd against the Rams, the NFL's equivalent of the cupcake team major college teams feast on early in the season. If he can come back with a great performance, you can be certain we'll all be singing Cutler's praises again all of next week, until the next game.

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