Dec 21, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) on the bench against the Detroit Lions during the first half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
The Chicago Bears are past the point of no return with Jay Cutler. As the deadline looms to make a decision on whether to keep Jay Cutler for another season and trigger $10 million for 2016, the Chicago Bears have made it known to anyone who will listen that they’re actively trying to move Cutler:
Say what you will about WSCR afternoon host Dan Bernstein and his on-air style, but he’s well connected within the Bears organization. He was all over the Brandon Marshall story and has been consistent with Cutler as well.
Here’s the concern with Cutler; you can’t unring the bell. I’m not sure how the Bears and Cutler get past this. You have to think that if the Bears can’t trade Cutler, they may just have to release him. How could you expect Cutler, who babied his way out of Denver when he got word that Josh McDaniels was trying to trade for Matt Cassel back in 2009, to continue playing for the Bears?
When the Bears brass failed to give Cutler a vote of confidence at the Scouting Combine after weeks of time to review the film, you knew where this was heading. The Bears have made it clear that they’re done coddling Cutler. They got rid of his favorite target by trading away Brandon Marshall and they’re not heaping faint praise on him.
The pathetic crop of quarterbacks on the free agent market and in the draft class is a double edged sword for the Bears. On one hand, it’s possible that the dearth of free agent talent could create a market for Cutler. I mean, when teams are lining up for a shot to get Josh McCown, Brian Hoyer and Mark Sanchez, you have to believe the Bears could find a suitor for Cutler.
Even both of the top quarterback prospects in the draft are flawed. Jameis Winston has all the physical tools, but he could end up swiping a bag of crab legs and getting himself into hot water off the field. Marcus Mariotta has the leadership and character, but hasn’t run a pro style offense.
On the flip side, the lack of options could be the very reason the Bears might end up continuing their loveless marriage with Cutler. What other choice do the Bears have? Could we possibly endure a season of Jimmy Clausen or Shaun Hill?
I just don’t see the point in continuing with Cutler when it’s clear how the staff feels about him. If you can’t get a decent trade, just cut him and cut your losses. Thanks to Cliff Stein’s genius contract, there is offset language that would recoup the cash for a new contract that Cutler would sign. For example, if Cutler signed a 3-year, $15 million deal, the Bears would get that cash back against what they would have owed Jay. They’ll suffer the cap hit, but better to just take the hit this year while you’re transitioning than to spread the pain over multiple years.
The Bears have come to the end of the road with Jay Cutler and a divorce is imminent. At this point, they’re only staying together for the children.