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Bears Bench Jay Cutler For Jimmy Clausen

The Chicago Bears are making a change with two games left in the season. Is his career done in Chicago?

Charlie Bernstein

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According to numerous media reports, the Chicago Bears have decided to bench Jay Cutler for this Sunday’s game against the Detroit Lions.

Cutler hasn’t played nearly as well as his stats would indicate.  He’s completed 66.1 percent of his throws for 3,640 yards with 28 touchdowns and 18 interceptions, but he’s also taken 36 sacks and fumbled 12 times, leading the NFL in turnovers.

“Absolutely it’s frustrating,” Cutler told the Bears’ official website. “We’re trying to say the same thing different ways after games. You get to a point where you don’t have the answer. I think that’s where we’re at.”

The move comes as a surprise being that Chicago inked Cutler to a seven-year, $126 million contract extension in the offseason.  Cutler’s deal still has a minimum of $15 million guaranteed remaining regardless of whether Cutler is on the Bears roster or not.

Nine years in, it’s pretty clear what Jay Cutler is.  A quarterback with amazing arm talent that has poor footwork and leadership qualities.  He’s won just one playoff game in his career and he was put in the best possible situation to succeed as Cutler has perhaps the most explosive supporting cast of offensive weapons in football.

Former NFL quarterback and Football Insiders quarterback expert Jeff Carlson spoke about Cutler.

“Chicago made a huge blunder by signing him to a big-money long-term deal, as he is about to help another coach find the unemployment line,” Carlson stated.  “The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed Josh McCown after the long-time journeyman put up fantastic numbers while playing for those same under-achieving Bears last season in Cutler’s absence, so the offense around Cutler really isn’t the problem with Matt Forte in the backfield, Martellus Bennett at tight end and big receivers Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall out wide.  After so much time, Cutler still floats around in his footwork, rarely hitting his back foot and delivering a pass on time.  He is taking sack after sack, not necessarily because of a bad offensive line, but due to his lack of mental discipline.  And this lack of discipline, along with the other deficiencies I mentioned are why the Chicago Bears and their fans will continue to struggle, as long as he is their signal-caller.”

Former Notre Dame star Jimmy Clausen will start on Sunday for the Bears as they host the first-place Detroit Lions.

Both Jay Cutler and Marc Trestman’s futures are up in the air as the Bears play out the final two games of their season.

 

Charlie Bernstein is the managing football editor for Football Insiders and has covered the NFL for over a decade.  Charlie has hosted drive time radio for NBC and ESPN affiliates in different markets around the country, along with being an NFL correspondent for ESPN Radio and WFAN.  He has been featured on the NFL Network as well as Sirius/XM NFL Radio and has been published on Fox Sports, Sports Illustrated, ESPN as well as numerous other publications.

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