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blackhawkpat

Chicago Bears Fans, Sit Down!

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Only four QB's in the last two years have thrown for a combined 8000 yards and 40 TD's. Warner, P Manning, Brees, and Cutler. Cutler, at 25, is the only one under thirty!

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angelina   

Congrats Pat.........with your schedule this year..it appears as if the Bears MUST be reckoned with in '09.

John

BTW...I guess my Jets think that Clemens will suffice. Good God! madarrgh

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He's a stud, Tony.

Got me 3rd place, nearly single-handedly, in the vaunted Raspberries Fantasy Football League.

If he gets the Bears that far (the NFC title game) next year, the move pays off huge.

At 25 he's got ten good years in the tank ... and I don't have to worry about the Bears quarterback until I'm ... 60. Indifferent

"I should live so long."

"K"

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JohnO   

As a life-long Bears fan, I'm not sure how to react to this deal. Orton, frankly, has a better record as a starting QB (21-12), than Cutler (17-20), and dammit, winning is the bottom line, NOT passing yardage!....unless you manage a fantasy football team.

On the other hand, Cutler's gone 13-1 when the Broncos have held their opponents to 21 points or less during his career there....and, assuming he isn't a head case from Hell (but it's quite possible he is), he should be Chicago's QB for a long time, and stability at that position is something they need on offense. (And the possibility of Cutler to Devon Hester on long bombs is quite tantalizing...)

Picking up Orlando Pace yesterday was also a huge plus for them.....Cutler certainly needs protection to be successful.

As an added bonus, BTW, the Washington Post this morning has an article and a sports editorial about how Jason Campbell might be affected by the fact that the Redskins, in Snyder's apparent frenzy to land Cutler, were shopping him around the league. Mike Wilbon in the editorial talks about Campbell's supposedly great potential....However, I'm seriously confused about why Campbell is so great with a lifetime record of well under .500 and a passing rating of about 82 last year....whereas Orton totally sucks, despite his much better record over the past 2-3 years, and an almost identical passing rating to Campbell's last year (!?!). (Per Wilbon, Chicago really needs Cutler, as opposed to Washington, which doesn't.) And yeah, I know....the poor kid Campbell's had to learn multiple offenses over the course of his career....although, last time I checked, Ben R., who's been in the NFL a comparable period of time, seemed to be able to win 2 Super Bowls under different coaches.....

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James   

That's good analysis JohnO. I look forward to reading your posts on sports...you know your stuff.

I hope Cutler becomes the decade long tenured, great quarterback (ala Elway, Aikman etc) the Bears have been looking for.

But I'm ambivalent also. If you account for Orton's injury, lack of starting experience and lack of firepower at the receiver position last year...I think Orton was very good, and potentially can be an outstanding NFL quarterback. He's also a character guy, and a leader the team loved.

It might have been the right thing to do, but the Bears gave up a ton. And the possibility is real that in 5 or 10 years we'll look back and say that Orton ended up a better NFL QB than Cutler.

I'll miss Orton and hope he (and Grossman too) kick some fanny in the future wherever they are. Both those guys earned my loyalty.

But I'm going to concentrate on the upside of the Cutler trade, and let myself be positively fired up!

Go Chicago Bears!!

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LC   

Wow, are Bears fans actually having a little seller's remorse for letting Kyle Orton go? Or is it more the combo of three high draft picks with Orton? That's the remorse I would have.... Then again, high draft picks don't always work out, do they? The annals of football are littered with failed 1st-round picks.

Personally, I was thinking that this is a win-win deal. As I told a Bears fan I know well, if I were him, I'd be dancing in the streets. Rejoicing.

But that's the perspective of someone who was a longtime Packer fan and for 16 unforgettable years never had to worry about the QB position. We always, always knew who was going to be under center on Sunday, because Brett Favre was great AND durable.

Cutler seems to be cut from the cloth (assuming his diabetes is kept in control). I for one think Cutler is perfect for the Bears -- tough, resilient, strong-armed, and fiery. He can make things happen and turn losses into positive yards. And playing QB on a team with a TUFF defense will only make him better.

So... I disagree with Mr. Charger, Tony Cartmill. I'd consider reserving playoff tix, or at least keeping my weekends free in early January 2010. The Bears do play, after all, in the same division as the post-Favre Packers, the Vikings (or the Vike-Queens, as some GB fans call 'em), and the Lions.

PS: Did you really think a Bears thread could go too long without a mention of Brett Favre? Hee hee hee

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The talk on Chicago sports radio today is that there is an NFL scoring system that values draft choices. The number one overall pick is valued at 3000 points.

The Bears had the #18 pick in this years draft and that is valued at only 900 points. The third rounder they also sent to Denver is worth 180 points. Most NFL insiders yesterday said that the Bears would only get a fourth or fifth round choice if they wanted to trade Orton straight up, but let's play devil's advocate and say they got a second rounder for him, worth 250 points.

The team was 9-7 under Orton/Grossman last year and with a weaker schedule and Cutler, should finish much higher this year, so certainly no better pick than the pick #18 again, which was valued at 900 points.

Therfore, 900+180+250+900=2230.

So, theoretically speaking, the total package traded for Cutler is not even worth the first over all pick in this year's draft, which does not offer anyone near Cutler's talent for the next three years. Thus, while the package looks a kings ransom, it really is a steal for the Bears!

One intangible that had not been played up enough is that last year, the Bears top two selections, OT Chris Williams and little used WR Earl Bennett were both college teammates of Cutler's at Vanderbilt. Bennett, then a freshman, was Cutler's favorite target and when Bennett did a pre-draft workout for NFL teams, he has such good rapport with Cutler, that Jay attended the workout and threw the ball to him for the entire workout! (You don't see many prima donna NFL players helping out a college player at a tryout, do ya?)

Last year, Cutler had eight 300+ passing yardage games, something that has only been done four times in Chicago Bears history, and both his completions and touchdowns for last season would have been all time marks in Bears history.

Here's a little tidbit I haven't seen mentioned anywhere else......the Bears third exhibition game this year is at Denver. That should sell a ticket or two, eh?

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JohnO   

Larry - I hope you're correct about Cutler being cut from the same cloth as Favre, who, make no mistake, was a winner first and foremost, whether he was throwing for 400 yards or handing off to a running back most of the game.

To date, the jury's still out on Cutler, other than the fact that yeah, he's a very good to excellent passer who can put up tons of impressive stats. He's also error-prone and possibly a head case, though. Is he a team leader? Don't know. And yeah, I believe they potentially gave up way too much for him....time will tell.

The keys to success of his new team will still most likely be (1) their defense and (2) running game. The latter lets you control the clock on offense, which keeps your defense off the field a lot, and well-rested.

P.S. You wanna bring up Favre, I'll bring up the Ditka years.....which were as lop-sided in Chicago's favor as the Favre years were for GB. Overall, lifetime, GB is 81-90-7 against Chicago.....long rivalry.

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JohnO   

Pat - The Vanderbilt connections are very interesting.....

However, that stat about Cutler's TD passes last year is not correct....he threw for 25. The Bears record is Erik Kramer, with 29 in 1995. The # of completions (384), I'm guessing, would be a Chicago record without a doubt, since the Bears season record for yards passing is about 700 less than what JC threw for in '08.

Likewise, I just found a stat on-line about Rex Grossman, where it stated that he threw for 339 yards against Tampa Bay on 12/17/06, making it the 10th 300 yard passing game in franchise history....where did that number of only 4 in the Bears' history come from? (The Bears' record of throwing the ball historically is bad enough, without making it even worse.....)

Of more importance, though, at least to me, regarding Cutler.....in his eight 300 yard games last year, the Broncos went 4-4, including a last game of the season 52-21 loss to San Diego (he threw for 316, Rivers for 207).

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Just going by what I heard on the radio on the stats. Actually, just heard it again about the four games. Still, ten 300 yard games in Bears history compared to HIM having eight LAST YEAR is pretty impressive.

My answer for his record in those 300 games would be two-fold. While I think that both the Bears and the Broncos had horrible offensive lines in 2008, that is something that hopefully, the Bears have addressed somewhat with the free agent signings of Orlando Pace and Frank Omiyale and the development of young Williams. The Bears defense should be far better than Denver's and Cutler has some sort of incredible won/loss record when the Broncs hold the oppostion to under 21 points.

Denver also does not have a running back like Matt Forte for a change of pace option. If you recall, the Broncos had a zillion running backs last year due to injuries.

With the Bears offense hopefully on the field next year more often, it should make the defense all the better.

The big question is who will Cutler throw to in Chicago? He had studs like Brandon Marshall and Eddie Royal in Denver that aren't here. My suggestion is, don't stop here, let's sign Rams free agent veteran Torrie Holt, to give young Bennett and Devin Hester time to get their careers on track. Cutler loves the TE spot and I think Greg Olsen is ready to become a prime time player.

The Bears second round pick is going to be very important and it MUST be either a receiver on an offensive linemen to improve this investment.

Now comes word that Denver wants to dump star TE Tony Scheffler, Cutler's best friend, because he "may not fit in" with new coach Josh McDaniels system. See, I feel there is an issue with this new coach more so than any character issue with Cutler, as evidenced by the Bennett connection.

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BTW, it's a little mind boggling, but here's the link to that draft formula chart. I don't totally understand it all, or agree with it all, but supposedly, this was the way the Giants worked out the Eli Manning/Phil Rivers deal a few years ago.

"Smith submitted his desire for Philip Rivers, the Giants' 2004 3rd round pick, and both the Giants' 1st and 5th round picks for 2005 (used to pick future Pro Bowlers Shawne Merriman and Nate Kaeding). Accorsi initially refused, but after Smith closed talks, Accorsi accepted the offer and the NFL finalized it."

Jimmy Johnson swears by this system.

http://www.sportznutz.com/nfl/draft/draft_point_value_chart.htm

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JohnO   

"Just going by what I heard on the radio on the stats. Actually, just heard it again about the four games. Still, ten 300 yard games in Bears history compared to HIM having eight LAST YEAR is pretty impressive."

Very true...but shockingly, at least to me, NFL QBs have thrown for 4,000 yards or more in a season 77 times!....including such notables as Trent Green, Elvis Grbac, Don Majkowski, Brian Sipe, Bill Kenney, Jon Kitna, Neil Lomax, Scott Mitchell, Jake Plummer, Lynn Dickey, Steve Buerlein, Marc Bulger, Jim Everett, etc....in addition to the Hall of Famers/future HoFers (Elway, Favre, Fouts, Marino, Manning, etc.)

Considering the number of all-tme greats that never came close to 4000 in a season (Aikman, Montana, Young, Bradshaw, Unitas, etc.) - there's been one Hell of a lot more passing going on over the past several decades!

I'm not sure where all of these nutty numbers regarding 300 yard passing games by the Bears are coming from....including mine! Here's a quote from a Bears website:

"The Bears passed for at least 250 yards in six games in 2007, the most since they had eight such games in 1999. Griese had four such contests despite playing in just seven games. Grossman had two 250-plus-yard games after recording seven in 2006. The Bears also had three 300-yard passing games in 2007, the most since they had six in 1999." - ??????

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The thing I've missed being said here is that a quarterback is only as good as his receivers as well... and I'm not sure the Bears have "stud" receivers... How will Cutler react when "sure" passes are dropped or simply missed?

And I agree... that JohnO sure knows his sports... now if only he wasn't such a Yankee fan... wink

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JohnO   

While they definitely need to improve their receiving corps, just the fact that Cutler will be able to get them a lot more catchable balls should improve the current Bears receivers. The number of ridiculously errant passes, even short ones, tossed by Grossman/Orton/Griese over the past 3-4 years has been absurd for an NFL team!

The one real intangible that Jay C. can (and hopefully will) bring to Chicago is...for want of a better term, a swagger, a self-confidence, a true desire to lead the team, and a burning need to make big plays....something that has sorely been lacking in the QB position there since McMahon in the late 80s. If there's been one consistent thing about Bears QBs since Jim McM, it's been the fact that they've all appeared hesitant for the most part, almost afraid to fail.

Grossman showed occasional sparks of swagger 3 years ago in the first third of the season (he got the NFC Player of the Month Award for September 2006), but seemed to lose all confidence the latter part of the season, and definitely in the Super Bowl. While the score was close most of that game, I never got the sense that Grossman had a chance of winning it. To me, their only late chance was if their defense or special teams took control, which they didn't. Grossman was/is so damn inconsistent.

Likewise, Orton's shown sparks on occasion, but, IMO, while he's a pretty decent QB, he's not really a particularly good passer, which, of course, hinders a QB's play if they're not really capable of pulling out an occasional long bomb when needed.

Cutler does not seem to be lacking in self-confidence....and this'll take him a long way in his career, most likely. I hope.....

One thing statistically that didn't surprise me about Denver last season, though....with one of the most high-powered offenses in the game, they were 24th of 32 teams in terms of time of possession (28.7 minutes out of 60). The Bears were 29th of 32, at 27.9 minutes....not good, considering how much they relied on the run. High powered passing teams generally fare pretty low (St.Louis was 21st, San Diego 22nd and Indianapolis 25th), while the running teams are better (NY Giants were 1st, Balitmore 2nd, Pittsburgh 5th, etc.)

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LC   

JohnO, that time of possession stat.... The Bronco defense was a far cry from the old Orange Crush days. It was porous last year, so opposing offenses scored on 'em -- long drives and short. So Cutler often had to do the old "strike-quick" thing, and he had a couple of good ones to throw to in Marshall and Royal.

Like I said earlier, I think this is a great time to be a Bears fan. The heck with those draft picks -- forget about 'em. You have a tough QB who'll be around for a decade. I think he's got that intangible you talk about -- the swagger and confidence that made Unitas, Montana, Marino, Elway, and Favre so great....

(If I don't kiss and make up with the Packers soon, I might just talk myself into becoming a Bears fan! I love a team with tradition.)

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Well, as a lifelong Packer fan, the best QB in the NFC North is STILL a Packer - Aaron Rodgers.

I only have 4 words for all the Bears fans getting excited...

"The Bears Still Suck!"

Thank you.

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