Jay Cutler is about to embark on a very successful career at Fox Sports. Here’s why.
Jay Cutler’s career in the National Football League has come to an end. After not finding the right fit with some of the better teams in the league, Cutler decided to hang up the cleats. His career will be remembered by many fans mostly for inconsistent play, backbreaking interceptions and never quite maximizing his talent. His supporters will say they he received a raw deal, never had enough talent around him, and was a tough-as-nails competitor that never received enough credit. The truth about Jay Cutler the quarterback is probably somewhere in the middle.
More from Bear Goggles On
- Franchise tag and transition tag windows open for Chicago Bears and NFL
- How the Chicago Bears can control the running back market in 2023
- The Chicago Bears can own the city of Chicago moving forward
- Chicago Bears NFL Combine Preview: Quarterback
- 7 best free agent tackle options for Chicago Bears
If you asked most fans, they would have expected Cutler to retire and mostly disappear from the public eye. Cutler always appeared to have a moody on field demeanor and was relatively private. But many people didn’t realize that the last couple seasons, Cutler started coming out of his shell. He was much more relaxed at his weekly press conferences, cracking jokes and becoming quite a favorite of local media members. Cutler didn’t shy away from good, tough questions, he appreciated them. He clearly started getting a better understanding of the media’s role in professional sports and perhaps that’s when he started turning the corner about a potential new career when his football playing days were over.
Because of that public persona, when Fox announced this morning that Jay Cutler was coming aboard to join Kevin Burkhardt and Charles Davis as the new number two team at Fox, the hot takes came fast and furious.
People assumed that Cutler would have the same moody attitude he displayed on the field. Fans joked he would give Burkhardt one word answers. Armchair analysts called it a lock that Cutler was certain to fail in the broadcast booth.
Those takes, however, are silly and foolish. Those comments come from a place of ignorance. Cutler will be successful at Fox. If he chooses, he could have a long career, and has the potential to even grab the number one team if he sticks with it long enough. He could be that good.
Cutler has all the tools to be a star as a broadcaster. While Cutler also had all the tools to be a star as a quarterback, as a broadcaster, it will all come together.
First, Cutler is smart. He’s smart on two levels. He’s generally a bright guy. He’s a Vanderbilt product who has always been very cerebral. Cutler also has a high football IQ. His offensive coaches have always spoke incredibly high about his work watching film and analyzing a defense, and it’s that’s ability that will translate to the booth.
Second, anyone who knows Jay Cutler will tell you that his private personality is far different from his public one. He’s much lighter in private and doesn’t take himself too seriously. Now that his playing career is over, he should really be able to relax and that personality has a chance to really shine in the booth.
Third, Cutler actually has a really good sense of humor. He has a quick, dry wit that really started being put on display in his press conferences and will make his analysis of a football game enjoyable. Several of his teammates have always said that about him and I don’t think the fans or media really believed them until the last couple seasons. If Cutler can make fun of himself in the booth, he will go a long way of winning over fans.
Fourth, one thing about Cutler is that he always has had a “I don’t give a crap” attitude. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t care, it means he doesn’t care what others think about him. That mentality really translates well in the broadcast booth. Many analysts tend to tiptoe around criticism, especially if it’s a coach who wants to return to the league. If Cutler brings his attitude to the booth, then he will say what needs to be said. He will criticize a coach, team, or player and he won’t care if it gets back to them. He will give his opinion with conviction. The number one criticism of analysts is that they shy away from making any type of negative comment and that shouldn’t apply to Cutler.
Finally, Fox is putting him in a position to succeed. CBS hired Tony Romo and immediately gave him the number one analyst spot with Jim Nantz. Not only that, Romo is part of a two-man booth. Cutler will start on the second team with Burkhardt and Davis. One, that means Cutler won’t face quite the same scrutiny of Romo and two, the pressure of a two-man vs a three-man booth is far different. With two analysts in the booth, the job comes with far less pressure than a solo analyst. With someone else in there to analyze games, Cutler will be able to get his feet wet a lot slower than Romo as he learns the ropes of analyzing football games.
Cutler may not be as big of a star as Romo, John Madden or Troy Aikman but you don’t have to have that level of stardom to one day be a lead analyst. Cris Collinsworth was a good NFL receiver, but he wasn’t a star. Collinsworth earned his spot on NBC by honing his craft over several years. Who knows if Cutler will want to broadcast games for that long. He may do it for a year, five years, to twenty years, no one really knows, largely because Cutler doesn’t know either.
Right now, Cutler knows he’s done playing football and is ready to start his second career. He didn’t give a crap what fans thought of him as a player, and all the hot takes about him as an analyst won’t bother him either. He has all the tools to one day become a great NFL analyst. Sure, that’s what everyone said about him as a player, only this time, Cutler won’t disappoint.