Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Broncos Cutting Ties With Cutler

This just in from The Denver Post:

"Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, frustrated at Cutler's unwillingness to communicate, has announced the team will begin the process of working out a trade for the Pro Bowl quarterback.

'Numerous attempts to contact Jay Cutler in the last 10 days, both by head coach Josh McDaniels and myself, have been unsuccessful,' Bowlen said in a statement released late Tuesday. 'A conversation with his agent (Bus Cook) earlier today clearly communicated and confirmed to us that Jay no longer has any desire to play for the Denver Broncos. We will begin discussions with other teams in an effort to accommodate his request to be traded.'"

I know I'm just a newbee to the Denver sports scene, but as an objective outsider, I have to say I like the Broncos' stand on this one. My only credibility to comment on the subject comes from living through a similar soap opera between T.O. and the Eagles a few years ago.

I know a lot of Broncos fans love Cutler and are struggling with this, but I really do think this will be better for the team in the long run.

The thing that killed the Eagles with the Owens situation was that it happened to an established team with an established coach and an established quarterback. If Denver did have to start over, why not do it now with head coach Josh McDaniels bringing in a new regime.

Think about it: they have cut most of their defensive starters from last year, they have a brand new backfield, Brandon Marshall is most likely going to be suspended for half the season, and they have the toughest schedule by far next year (Steelers, Pats, Cowboys, Giants, and Browns at home and Colts, Ravens, Redskins, Eagles, and Bengals on the road PLUS their division games - Yikes).

So WHY NOT start over by getting a young guy that McDaniels likes and let Chris Simms take the brunt of that schedule while the new kid learns on the sidelines and then takes over in December when they're already out of the playoff chase?

I know it sucks for this year, but it really seems like this could be more beneficial for the franchise heading into the future.

Now, to Cutler's credit, he did throw for 4,526 yards and was selected to his first Pro Bowl in 2008 and I can't name five other young quarterbacks that I would take to start a team with over him (Definitely Matt Ryan, maybe Joe Flacco, and maaaaybe Aaron Rodgers).

But there is a glaring negative side to Cutler

He is only 17-20 as a starter in his first three years, even though he has 54 career touchdowns, he has thrown an alarmingly high 37 interceptions (including a career high 18 last year), and he has yet to make a playoff appearance - and that includes this past season where the team lost three straight games to end the year and they only needed to win ONE to clinch a playoff spot (Cutler threw 2 TDs and 4 INTs over those three games).

And, maybe most importantly, he is creating an image for himself as something of a drama queen.

If he was 30-7 or even 25-12 as a starter with one or two playoff games under his belt, I would be a little more sympathetic to his hurt feelings over being involved in a potential trade talk, but when you are 17-20 with no playoff appearances and 37 career INTs, it makes it a little tough to get on board.

Hell, Donovan McNabb is mentioned in a trade every other Wednesday and even got benched in the middle of a 10-7 game and STILL was able to get over it and lead his team to the NFC Championship.

I guess I just can't exactly see Cutler's side on this one.

Now the question becomes where does Cutler go and what can the Broncos get for him? A couple of weeks ago, one NFL source said that they could probably swing a veteran QB, a number one this year, AND a number one next year.

That sounds like a lot, but again, when you think of him as a potential franchise quarterback, then it really isn't too bad. But now that the Broncos have come out saying they want to trade him, does that decrease his value?

I've heard that the Jets, Buccs, Vikings, Lions, and Bears among others have contacted Denver over the past few weeks and you have to think the Broncs will try to get the best value (i.e. highest draft pick) available.

If one of those NFC North teams lands Cutler, they obviously have to be considered a legit contender in what was somewhat of a weak division last year.

Regardless, this will be fun to track over the past few days or weeks or months.

What are your thoughts? Are you Pro-Broncos or Pro-Cutler on this one and where do you think he will land?


scoobyt said...

I think this will be a 3 team deal. Denver will give up Cutler and some players and get draft picks in return.

My wild card team. The Bills. Can you imagine the splash with getting T.O. and Cutler in the same year? The Bills trade their disgruntled Pro Bowl tackle to the Eagles for some picks. The Bills trade those picks, a few more picks, and a QB to the Broncos for Cutler.

Just Being Josh said...

As much as I would love to see Cutler and T.O. paired up so that they could cry baby each other to the death, haven't Bills fans suffered enough?

Just Being Josh said...

PS. After I started looking at the draft order, the teams that make the most sense now are the Lions (with the #1 pick), the Jags (#8) and the 49ers (#10).

The Broncs would have to get a boat load to accept a deal with a team in the late teens (Buccs, Browns, Jets, etc.)

Paul said...

93% have Culter's back on this. I think the most under-rated thing about this whole drama is PRE trade rumors.

A - Culter lost the coach he loved. He feels the team is building towards something and now the are rebuilding. BUT, its ok, they tell him. We need a new coach, but the offense will remain intact.

B - Oops sorry. The offensive coaches are gone too, but don't worry, you're still our guy!

C - haha....uh funny thing happened...see uh...there is ONE guy we like better than you and he called and we kinda flirted around but nothing happened and its over now.

Do you wait until she is sleeping with the poolboy in your bed to break up with the sketchy gf? Hell no. You draw the line at too many shady dudes around and the lines keeps getting slowly moved.

It's the line creep factor that bothers me. Little lies add up and eventually you have to say peace out.

And then ALL he wants is for you to say, it was all a misunderstanding, you are our guy. We were never serious, you WILL NOT BE TRADED. And they played hardball. "everyone is tradable"

Did Cutler need some codddling? Sure he did. They were the one jerking him around. He could have been the bigger man. He didn't think he needed to.

P.s. Cutler is not top 5. He is #1!!! Hands down THE BEST YOUNG QB IN THE GAME. You can have Matt Ryan and Cassell. Solid guys with bright futures maybe, but anybody can do it once. Culter did it with undiagnosed diabetis and losing 30 pounds mid season. Then he got that fixed and made the pro bowl.

You want W-L record?!?!!?

13-1 in games when the defense gives up 21 or less and that one loss was in OT when D gave up 80 yard bomb on first play.

If I was starting a team he is my FIRST choice at QB. Over Brady, Peyton, anyone. They are old. With Culter you have the jump on the whole league. 3 years from now you have the unquestioned best QB in the game.

Broncos are idiots.

I'd trade whatever it took to get him if I was the Rams.

Just Being Josh said...

I guess my point would be where in Cutler's contract is it that he has to be coddled and nutured?

McNabb has been screwed over by the Eagles more times than Jenna Jameson and yes, you always knows when he is pissed but he has never pulled this kind of crap.

I am surprised Paulie, I'm so confused as to how we switched places on this one. I'm behind the big machine and you're looking out for the little guy!

When you throw 4 picks and 2 TDs over three games in which you only need to win one to go to the playoffs, I could give a damn about what your defense does.

There is no moxy with Cutler (yet), no big game balls (yet) and I can't blame them for wanting to move on.

This is not a romantic relationship. This is building a franchise.

Just Being Josh said...

Just got the follwing email from our resident Bills fan, EZ, in response to Kev's Cutler to Buffalo suggestion:

"I'd be OK with it but it's not very likely. The Bills have several glaring needs including O-line and acquiring Cutler would likely prevent them from filling other need areas. I'd much rather have Edwards behind a better O-line, which obviously helps Lynch too, than Cutler behind their current sorry O-line.

Plus, it sounds like Denver is looking for help in their defensive front 7 in any Cutler deal, and the Bills should hang onto the guys Denver would want, namely DE Aaron Schobel or MLB Paul Posluszny. I'm just hoping Cutler does not land with the Jets!

The Bronco that I could see landing in Buffalo that a lot of fans are hoping for is Scheffler. An improved O-line to go with TO, Evans, Scheffler, Lynch, and Edwards would make this season a lot more interesting."

Good thoughts...

Just Being Josh said...

Just had a good phone convo with Paulie and he brought up a good point that I hadn't thought of:

This is all about the context of the timing of this situation. If this EXACT thing had happened with Cutler at the time when Brady, Manning, and maybe even a McNabb were still young, I don't think the rest of the league would care one bit about Cutler.

But maybe he is using the current landscape of the league to his advantage to get out and get a new, bigger deal because other than him and Ryan and maybe Big Ben, who are the future franchise QBs??

This is fun!!

Paul said...

Def don't they "have" to coddle him, but I think they regret it in the end.

Maybe he is just an above average QB and they get a good enough QB to win with and don't miss him.

I think he ends up as the best QB in the NFL and they rue the day they let him go. jmo

Just Being Josh said...

I love it when people "rue the day".

That has to be one of the greatest concepts ever thought up by humanity.

Bert said...

Just keep this QB away from Detroit. We have to get a Offensive line that does not allow 70 sacks a season and a defense that gives up less than 30 points per game. DC will be fine and Stanton may even be a back-up choice. Smith or Curry should be the 1st pick.

Just Being Josh said...

Here is an email I just got from another Bills fan Aarron who also seems to agree with Paulie on the relationship aspect of the situation. Maybe I'm just missing something here:

"As a devoted Bills fan i would personally accept Cutler with open arms. It's easy to look at Jay's overall record of 17-20 as a starter an say he has not quite developed as a quarterback. The most telling stat of all is that Mr. Cutler is 13-1 when the defense gives up 21 points or less. I remember a day when the great Peyton Manning had a very similiar type of record. The only difference is Manning was provided with a great coach in Tony Dungy who solidified the defense which allowed Peyton to fully blossum into the QB he is now. Unfortunately Culter will not have that oppurtunity in Denver because Pat Bowlan decided he would give the oppurtunity to another Belichick clone because they have all been so successful thus far (Crennel, Weis, Mangini). Even if Cutler were to stay in Denver, it would be another 3 yrs or more before the defense could be in a position to help the broncos rather than hurt due to the recent switch to the 3-4 style defense. Denver does not have the right personel yet, which equates to Cutler standing along the sideline while his opponents are marching down the field scoring at will for the 4th year in a row.

I know josh an i disagree on who's to blame, but its not hard for me to take Cutler's side on this. Maybe its because we are both the same age, or maybe cause we've both been burned recently in our lives. But when you really think about it, is playing QB in the NFL any different than dating? Yes & No. For example, if you had been dating someone for 3 years and recently found out they had been sneaking around behind your back wouldn't you lose some trust in them. Compound that with having to hear this news not from your significant other, but from a 3rd party. I for one would personally be offended and feel a sense of betrayal. Cutler is the face of the franchise, and before McDaniels had even decorated his office he was looking for a way to bring in the patriots. Perhaps he forgot but he didn't get the New England Cheaters job, he got the Denver Broncos job.

Back to Cutler to the Bills. As I've said many times, i like Trent Edwards just fine. But i fear buffalo will not go deep into the playoffs with him. As i've seen him play I see that he has a ceiling. I kind of think of him as a David Gerrard type. He can certianly protect the ball an make a few plays, but when it comes down to the finish do you have any faith he will make the BIG play? I don't! If i was in the Buffalo Bills front office i would try to build a deal around Trent Edwards and John McCargo. Edwards is a stop gap kinda player until McDaniels gets who he wants. He doesn't make alot of money so that would allow them to use their cap space on much needed Defense. McCargo is conceiveably capable of being the NT in the 3-4 scheme. He has good size (6'2" 310 lbs) and enough potential to validate his former 1st round status. Throw in a couple 2nd round draft picks an everyone is happy.

An the best part would be that Jay Cutler would fire that 100 mph heater he has an break both of T.O's hands in training camp an I wouldn't be forced to watch him destroy my team this year."

CJ said...

I have to agree with Josh on this. What has Cutler EVER done to be in a position to DEMAND anything? Who the hell does this guy think he is?! That would be like starting a new job, failing your evaluations and saying I demand a raise or I am quitting! Crazy! I agree that Cutler is the best young QB out there right now, but where's the division title? Where's the playoff appearance? EXACTLY! Do not give me crap about bad defense; Peyton had the Colts in the playoffs in his second season DESPITE terrible defense and he continues to do so. Peyton would have been in a position to demand anything (though he has way too much integrity for that) but Cutler has proven NOTHING, and is in no position to demand.

EZ said...

This is 90% Cutler's fault. He's being an insecure baby. He's certainly talented, but his numbers are inflated by the fact that Denver has to pass all the time because of their terrible defense.

The analogy of dating doesn't apply here. In a dating relationship, it's pretty much a deal breaker to actively pursue other options or even hint at another option being better than your current one.

Once you've reached a certain stage, you start talking about a lifetime commitment (marriage). You don't agree to be married for 3 years with a club option for a 4th year. Lifelong commitment and fidelty is key.

In football, IT'S A BUSINESS!!! The players are out to make the most money possible, go where there is going to be the best chance to start, etc. Players will hold out and demand to be traded at the drop of a hat even if they have 2 years left on a deal. Sure, winning and team loyalty are somewhere on the priority list, but not first for many players.

Similarly, GMs and coaches are out to win. Period. If cutting, trading, or benching a "star" player is going to help the team win, then they can (and should) do so. Loyalty to specific players is admirable but not if it hurts the team.

Players like Cutler need to get a grip and realize how things work. QBs with a far greater pedigree like Montana and Favre ended their careers in other cities after building a HOF career and winning The Big Game in the city they are known for.