There’s no official word yet on recovering Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler. Actually, the official word is “questionable” as the Bears submitted their injury report in advance of Sunday crucial NFC North showdown with the Minnesota Vikings.
Cutler continued to practice and has made steady progress, but he still needs to get clearance from an independent neurologist on Saturday morning to be assured of playing on Sunday. Players and coaches alike are encouraged at the prospects that #6 will be back under center:
“He has progressed as we wanted him to do,” Smith said. “As I’ve said, it’s looking good. One more step to get him evaluated by an independent neurologist. Jay Cutler is getting better, was able to do more than he did yesterday.”
Despitet the Bears struggles of the Bears’ offensive line, they won’t let that determine if Cutler plays on Sunday.
Lovie Smith said the recent performance of the offensive line — the 49ers sacked backup quarterback Jason Campbell six times — will not be a factor in the decision to play Cutler.
“No,” Smith said. “If a player is ready to go, he’s a professional football player. He wants to do what he does for a living. We held him out last week when he wasn’t ready. If a player is injured we won’t play them, but if they’re ready to go, of course. We’re trying to win football games and they want to play.”
I can’t say that I blame Lovie on this one. It’s not like they’re playing the Titans or Jaguars and they have a margin for error. If the Bears lose on Sunday, they’ll fall behind the Vikings and into third place in the NFC North. It would be a precipitous fall from first to third in less than a week.
What do you think? Should the Bears sit Cutler another week even if he’s cleared? Is this a must-win game for the Bears? Is it worth risking Cutler if he’s any less than 100%? Let’s hear your comments.