Chicago Bears: 5 reasons why Jay Cutler was completely wrong about the Bears QB situation

Chicago Bears (Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports)
Chicago Bears (Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears
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Issue Three: Cutler is projecting his experience adjusting to the NFL onto Justin Fields

One of the more interesting pieces of the interview were some of the tidbits Jay Cutler shared from his own experience as a rookie in Denver and specifically how he felt going into the week 1 opener that season.

"“I remember the first game…and I’m like I have no idea what’s happening here, let’s figure this thing out for a minute…we were in St. Louis and it was insanely loud…there were a million checks that game…,but if I go in this game, they better dial this back to day 1 or I’m screwed.” – Jay Cutler via Waddle and Silvy"

Cutler, like most rookie QBs from that era, greatly benefited from the time they spent adjusting to the NFL. However, this is where I feel his experience would be different than Justin Fields because Cutler was drafted in 2006 (surprisingly also pick 11) at a time when professional offenses and college systems had very little overlap.

Most quarterbacks from that era did have a steep learning curve followed by a rough adjustment period so Cutler isn’t alone with his experience in that regard. Peyton Manning has the rookie interception record, Drew Brees was bad enough that the Chargers moved on after only three years, and Aaron Rodgers himself says that his three seasons on the bench were invaluable for his development.

However, nowadays, offenses are tailor-made to suit what quarterbacks can do well already because there is so much pressure to win while they are on their rookie contract. That’s why we see the rookie touchdown record getting reset every few years (four of the top five were drafted in the past 10 years; the other is Peyton Manning).

As it pertains to the Chicago Bears and Justin Fields, both Nagy and Fields have stated that the playbook is similar to Ryan Day’s offense from Ohio State. This likely means everything ranging from plays to concepts to even checks are all probably familiar to Justin Fields. Therefore, I feel Cutler’s concern is valid but more reflective of a different era in the NFL. After all, Cutler’s frame of reference is his jump from the Vanderbilt offense to coaching legend Mike Shanahan’s playbook.