If the bottom line is the most important thing, than Marc Trestman becoming the head coach didn’t change anything. The Chicago Bears still missed the playoffs, as the defense continued to decline while the offense slightly improved. Something of a Zerio-sum game, which at the end of it comes the decision to keep or let go of Jay Cutler.
Cutler actually played quite well in the 28-33 loss to the Green Bay Packers. He wasn’t sacked into oblivion, and didn’t turnover the ball at an alarming rate. He did throw an interception, but it was also the first time ever in which he threw more touchdowns than interceptions when facing the Packers.
But that didn’t really make it clear whether he should be signed on, franchise tagged or let go. The Bears did quite well with Josh McCown under center as well this season, and statistically McCown was the better quarterback. However, McCown clearly isn’t the answer, but no one is sure Cutler is as well.
I thought Jay played very well tonight. I don’t know what the stats are. I though he threw the long ball well. He gave the guys a chance to make plays, which gave them the long ball. I thought he was efficient throwing the ball inside. I thought he was in total command of what was going on out there.
Throughout the season, Trestman never let on if he’s a big Jay Cutler fan or someone who is simply waiting for the opportunity to bench him and go in a different direction. Bringing him back the starting role in the final weeks of the season probably points to the former, but that just might be some order from above. Trestman not treating Cutler like Greg Schiano treated Josh Freeman doesn’t man he’s actually hoping he’ll be back next season and for the foreseeable future.
When you ask Cutler, he also steps away from the subject. Talking about how now is a time to think about losing the game to the Packers, and addressing the contract issue will come in due time. Brandon Marshall, obviously, expects Cutler to be back. There’s a chance the Bears are considering Marshall’s reaction as well. when making up their mind about what to do with Cutler, who has been the team’s quarterback for the last five seasons, in which the Bears have made the playoffs only once.
Obviously, there’s a lot more to wins and losses than just in how the quarterback performs, but many people have to be wondering if that’s the change that needs to made.
There doesn’t seem to be a better quarterback who’ll become available from the pros. College? Teddy Bridgewater is going to be a very high pick, and probably the same goes for Johnny Manziel and Blake Bortles out of UFC.
The question that needs to guide the Bears is this – is the defense beyond repair and it’s time to blow it up? If so, than maybe heading in a new direction at quarterback also makes sense. However, if looking back at this season and the numbers the defense gave up (30th in the NFL at 394.6) and deciding it was more about injuries and slight adjustments, than sticking with Cutler and the crew around him makes the most sense.