Emasculating haircut? Check.
Emasculating dog? Check.
Comfy pants? Check.
Orange running shoes that Steve Prefontaine likely tested in 1973? Check.
Pink bag filled with rolled up dog shit retrieval bags? Check.
Bemused look? Check.
Giving the old fuck you to the paparazzo? Check.
Ahh, the meatheads are out in full force. They’re all saying that Jay Cutler quit, that he couldn’t handle being down 14-0 in the NFC Championship game so he just started limping around and then took himself out of a game so that his sterling backups Todd and Caleb could finish things up.
And I’ll admit that yesterday, when Jay first got hurt I was in meathead mode myself.
Some of you got these tweets from my award-winning Twitter feed:
If Cutler can stand up he needs to play.
Unless he gets major reconstructive surgery on his knee tomorrow, Cutler will never live this down. And shouldn’t.
It didn’t take me too long to figure out just how wrong I was.
Look, we know Jay Cutler is a lot of things. He’s a punk. He’s got really weird hair. He’s careless with his footwork and where he throws the football, but he’s not a quitter. So I immediately regretted sending both of those twats. The good news is that barely anybody actually reads my tweets, so it really doesn’t mean anything. It was just suffering the sheer panic of Todd Collins actually being in a playoff game taking snaps.
LaDanian Tomlinson got the same crap a few years ago when he limped out of an AFC Championship game against New England, while his own quarterback, Phillip Rivers was hobbling around on a torn ACL. Does anybody really think that LaDanian Tomlinson isn’t tough?
So let the meatheads have their fun. They need someone to focus their rage on, and it might as well be Jay. But Jay didn’t quit. He got hurt. It happens, it’s football. The Bears, however, continued their lifetime achievement of failed public relations with the inept way they handled the announcement of Jay’s injury. He was out, and he probably deserves some credit for limping out for the first possession of the third quarter and giving it a shot, but instead they said he was “questionable.” So that made every dope on their couch, like me (and amazingly like half of the Jacksonville Jaguars–including Maurice Jones-Drew who sat out the final two games of the season when the Jags needed a win to make the playoffs) think that Jay should be doing SOMETHING to get ready to play again.
The only ‘something’ we saw was the sad (and really funny) sight of him on the bike on the sidelines trying to pedal it while still wearing his cape.
The Jay Cutler we’ve seen the last two years isn’t going to quit. He’s going to get hammered and he’s going to get up and he’s going to throw some more interceptions. That’s what he does.
What he needs to do, apparently, is go the full Favre. When he was in for that first possession of the third, and he realized that his bad knee wasn’t going to allow him to back up or step into his throws he needed to crumple to the ground and force the training staff to carry him to the sidelines. Instead he limped off and then stood there, while Bears fans built up rage and bile.
I could write a novella about the stupidity of not having a capable backup quarterback on the roster, but I’ll keep it shorter than that. The reason Todd Collins was the number two QB was that he knows the plays, he knows the reads and he gives you the best chance to still run your whole offense. But..he’s also 40 years old and can’t move and so, he’s useless when the bullets start flying.
The reason Caleb Hanie is number three is because when a team runs the most basic zone blitz in the world, he throws the ball to their nose tackle. I will give Caleb credit though, he made some plays, he didn’t play scared and he legitimately made the fourth quarter of that game interesting and fun. He also shaved off his weird playoff mustache between the end of the game and press conference, which was a nice touch.
It would have been nice to have seen that second half play out with Cutler able to be in the game, though. The Bears figured out the Packers offense about halfway through the second quarter and made Aaron Rodgers look mortal. But that’s now how the game works.
For now, I’ll busy myself ignoring any further coverage of this Cutler injury story because I’m already tired of it, and apparently my view on it is the same as David Huh and Rick Telander. So that makes me really uncomfortable. So I’ll leave you with this, Brian Urlacher’s postgame quote when asked if he thinks Jay is tough:
“Jay was hurt. We don’t question his toughness. He’s tough as hell. He’s one of the toughest guys on our football team. He doesn’t bitch, he doesn’t complain when he gets hit. He goes out there and plays his ass off every Sunday. He practices every single day. We don’t question his toughness.”
I really think we’re going to win this game, don’t you? I was just watching some tape on on our offense against Seattle and I thought Jay was just tremendous. Just really, really great. You know, he’s really, really smart, don’t you? He’s a joy to coach. He’s really brilliant. He has a great feel for the game, he’s really just so much fun to be around.
He knows that St. Louis isn’t the state capital of Missouri. Just knew it right off the top of his head, didn’t have to look it up or anything. Jefferson City. You bet. Most people think it’s St. Louis. But not Jay. Really smart guy.
Let me give you an example of why Jay’s such a really special human being. It was during the Giants game. You remember that game, right? It was a Sunday night game in New York. We had a couple of really minor, I mean just small, problems with some of our protections and the Giants set an NFL record for sacks in a half. I mean, just some little things we needed to clear up. Nothing to really worry about.
On one of the last plays of the half, Jay was hit pretty hard by a blitzing defensive back and when he hit the ground his helmet kind of bounced off the turf. Now see, what happens is that your brain is in your skull of course–Jay knows this, because he’s so smart–but it’s literally floating in some goo called cerebrospinal fluid, and say you are in a car accident, or maybe you’re a professional quarterback and your head slams into the turf–we’re just talking anecdotally here–your brain can actually shift in your skull and displace some of the cerebrospinal fluid and your brain can kind of smash into your skull. And you can actually bruise your brain a little bit. And then you kind of drool on yourself and everything goes white and your body tries to protect itself by making you fall asleep and if you do that you might just kind of suffer, well, death.
OK, anyway, so Jay does the falling down, head bouncing off the turf deal and he drools, things go white and he looks like it’s nap time. So I leave him in the game for the next series. I’m just trying to keep him from falling asleep, and it works and he lands on his head a couple more times, and when we meet at halftime he’s calling everybody “Judy” and he’s foaming at the mouth a little bit, so I tell him that Lovie and I have decided to take him out and use Todd Collins, because Todd is a really smart guy and he’s super talented.
You know what he says?
“Whatever, I don’t really care.”
Can you believe that? Now that is leadership. He just wants what is best for the team. No ego on this guy. Just a great human being. You know how you can donate like $20 to that one NBA charity and they’ll buy mosquito nets for a whole village in Ghana? Jay is like a human mosquito net. I really love him.
You know who else is really smart? Devin Hester. At midseason we cut the number of plays he needed to know down by like 80 percent. But it’s not because he couldn’t learn them. No sir. We just figured that if he could know 100 plays at a level that Albert Einstein could be envious of, imagine how well he would know 20? He’s like Stephen Hawking without the wheelchair. Sure he still lines up in the wrong spot once and a while, but I’m sure it’s because he sees something in the defense that shows him that the play would be even better if instead of lining up in the left slot he lined up covering the tight end on the right side. His perception of plays is off the charts. Just outstanding.
What do you want me to tell you about Frank Omiyale? I think he’s incredible. We moved him to left tackle during a game in Dallas and our offensive line has been incredibly brilliant ever since. What I love about Frank, and I’d show you here on this film if we had just a little more time, he knows when to stop blocking a guy. Some players they’ll lock onto a defender and they’ll block him for the entire play, they’ll ride him past the QB and slam the guy into the turf. But Frank? Sometimes he won’t block his guy at all! He’s setting the guy up for when we really need him blocked. Another thing he’s great at? Sometimes he’ll actually let his defender push him all the way into the quarterback. Now see, this is really smart. What’s going to hurt a QB more? Getting hit by a guy with a full on head of steam, or having a 340 pound pillow shoved into you? Right? I mean, I wish the casual fan could appreciate the complexity of the game.
Now take a team like Green Bay, who we’re going to be pummeling tomorrow on our way to the NFC Championship. They’re a great team. They might be the greatest team I’ve ever seen. Charles Woodson is unbelievable. Clay Matthews is wonderful, just wonderful. I know that we need to establish the run and we’re going to, believe me. We’re going to give the ball to Matt Forte and to Chester Taylor and we’re going to really commit to grinding it down the field. I could honestly see us run the ball four or five times a half. Maybe more. Probably not. I mean, come on, we’re only 60 minutes away from the Super Bowl, we’re going to sling that thing. What’s the NFC Championship game record for passing yards in a game? I don’t care if it’s 700, we’re going to smash it. I might never get back here, you think I’m going to just call a bunch of handoffs?
What’s that? Just a second, Coach Smith wants to talk to me. I’ll be right back. He’s a great coach by the way, and an even better man. Remind me to tell you the story about that family he saved from the house fire. I’ll be right back.
Hey, you’re still here. Great. You know, you’re a really, really good listener. Just incredible really. Great job by you.
OK, you realize that stuff about only running the ball four or five times in a half, I was just kidding right? Yeah, sure, I mean we are going to run it like we’re the ’72 Dolphins. I was just being hilariously funny with all the stuff about setting the NFC Championship game record for passing yards.
Anyway, I have to go make just a few little, really minor, tiny really, adjustments to the game plan. So thanks for your time. You did a great job. Thanks for your time.
Oh, yeah, one last thing. It’s 381 yards.
And we’re gonna smoke the shit out of it.Read More
I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but on Sunday the Bears will play the Green Bay Packers for the right to go to the Super Bowl in Dallas in a couple of weeks. I really wish I could enjoy this, because it would seem pretty cool, you know, playing your arch rival in a championship game for the first time ever, and in a playoff game for only the second time in history (the other time was the week after Pearl Harbor). It’s just too bad we’re not allowed to enjoy this.
What? You don’t understand what I mean? I’m sure it’s not the first or last time.
According to the media, we’re not supposed to enjoy this out of the blue successful Bears season because the Bears head coach, Lovie Smith doesn’t like talking to the media.
We’re also not supposed to like this team because the quarterback, Jay Cutler, is a prick, who is–you’ll see a trend here–not really fond of talking to the media.
I’m really not sure why that’s supposed to matter to us. I’m rooting for a football team, not the press conference. I understand that it has to be frustrating for the working media to have the two most visible and accessible (by NFL mandate, not by their choice) members of the team so unwilling to say anything of substance to them. But I don’t really care.
I think Lovie’s a pretty good football coach. Of course he does things that make me nuts, like blowing replay challenges and calling weird timeouts and stuff, and it makes me nervous that in a big game that’s going to get the Bears beat. But you know who else thinks their coach is shit at replay challenges and timeouts and stuff? Every fan of every team in the NFL. It should be comforting that the guy Lovie’s coaching against this week is laughably terrible at in game strategy.
Is it true that Lovie can be dismissive and condescending to the media? Of course it is. I just don’t know why that’s supposed to matter to me or you. I know Lovie goes to great pains to praise the fans after every home game, and we all enjoy having our asses kissed, so thanks!
I also know that since Lovie’s come to town the Bears are 9-5 against Green Bay and 9-3 against Brett Favre, and those two had haunted the franchise for a decade before that. The Bears have won three division titles and if they win Sunday they’ll have gone to a pair of Super Bowls.
I reserve (and exercise) the right to yell at the TV on Sunday at something Lovie has done that’s dumb. Just don’t ask me to hate him because he can’t pretend to give a shit about the questions asked by the Hub Arkushes and David Huhs of the world.
But it’s not just Lovie, of course. Some of the local, and apparently all of the national, media think Jay Cutler is the biggest turd ever to fester on the face of this Earth. Jay’s problem is the same as Lovie’s. He treats his media availabilities as something to endure. Jay seems to really enjoy a good, deep sigh and eye roll. He makes no effort to pretend that he doesn’t think a question was dumb. And again, I ask, why do we care?
What I know about Jay is that he’s the first real quarterback the Bears have had in a quarter century and the first of adequate size since Sid Luckman. I’m not even exaggerating. Oh sure, he does dumb things from time to time. He holds onto the ball too long and refuses to throw the ball away too often. He thinks he can make any throw at any time and his interceptions tend to be atrocious. But…he also makes plays. Big ones. The kind we got used to thinking only quarterbacks on other teams would ever make.
On Sunday, Jay will get matched up against another good young quarterback, and every football “expert” will tell you that Aaron Rodgers is a lot better than Jay. Jay’s too careless. Aaron’s a gutty leader, the epitome of class, the next great QB. And you what I love about Jay? Jay doesn’t give a shit about that. Jay doesn’t need the media to like him, honestly, Jay doesn’t need us to like him. Jay’s just going mope his way out onto the field and try to beat the shit out of the Packers. And if he does, he’ll mope off the field, and if he doesn’t? He’ll mope off the field. But he’s going to try, and he’s not going to be scared.
There’s a good chance that the NFC Championship game could turn into a shoot out, and for the first time since the invention of the NFC, the Bears won’t be outgunned. But we’re not supposed to like that because Jay’s a prick.
If given the choice between a prick who can sling it and a choir boy media darling with a pop-gun arm, I’ll take the slinging prick.
Honestly, Rodgers is just as big a dick as Jay is, but he pretends not to be. There’s actually a kind of honor in Jay not bothering to disguise it.
You know what successful QBs are dickheads who half the team want to kick in the face?
All of them. Quarterbacks are arrogant asses. They’ve been told they were special since they were little, and they believe it. Some of them take great pains to cultivate their image as that of a gritty leader. Some of them are Jay Cutler and just act like the petulant ass that they are.
The media will tell us that we don’t have to like these guys.
But we don’t have to not like them, either.
Go Bears.Read More