Hey-o! How ya been? Yeah me too.
Just thought I’d throw up my two cents on the Packers’ playoff ouster of the hearty Chicago Bears. Everyone wants to tan Jay Cutler’s hide but I must say, I think that’s misplaced blame. For starters, haven’t you been watching this season? He’s not exactly the Bears’ knight in shining armor. Yes he’s a fighter, playing with diabetes and all. And no one’s disputing that he’s got a rocket arm – DeAngelo Hall agreed as he picked off 4 rockets in one game. It’s accuracy and game smarts that we’re struggling with here, Jay.
I do believe Jay was hurt. If I find him guilty of anything, it’s callousness and sheer stupidity. I’m not into faking injuries…so if you are actually hurt, would it kill you to look a little hurt?! He had to know Chicago was going to crucify him. For a guy who finds it impossible to smile, would it have been so hard to grimace? In addition, Charles Barkley is on point (whaaaa?) that it was poor form of Jay not to be giving Caleb Hanie every ounce of advice and encouragement he could between offensive series.
The way I see it, we have 2 problems, and thus 3 problems.
1. The Packers played well enough to win. Point blank. Not amazingly the entire game, but amazingly when it mattered.
2. Remember that time the Bears put in 39-year old Todd Collins for two series in the middle of the NFC Championship game in 2011?
Let’s examine this. I was but a pre-teen child 15 years ago when Collins was drafted into the league by none other than my beloved Buffalo Bills. Granted, as successor to the great Jim Kelly, Collins had very big shoes to fill, but not even once in the year he started for the Bills (1997) was I a fan. In 15 seasons as a mostly backup quarterback, Collins has thrown more interceptions than touchdowns (24 to 22). The last time he resurfaced to the general populace was in 2007 when he came in for the Redskins in relief of Jason Campbell to defeat…why, none other than your Chicago Bears! And I remember sitting at Duffy’s and freaking out, saying things like “Todd COLLINS?!?! He’s still PLAYING?!?! How is this possible!??! Does anyone else think this is ridiculous?!??!”
But no, no one else did. Because at that point no one in Chicago knew who he was.
But I knew.
Three years later, here we are. Two previous game appearances for Collins this year resulted in 0 TDs and 5 interceptions. Shades of Chan Gailey/Trent Edwards…do we really believe that Collins beat out Caleb Hanie for the backup position? NFL Fact: “open” competitions for a position are rarely “open.”
So, to sum up. I don’t blame Cutler. I don’t even blame Collins. I blame problem #3, Mike Martz. This was a disastrous offensive game plan from the start, even before Cutler got hurt, and it got worse before it got better…and even then it never got good enough. I’m sure Todd Collins is a very nice man (well okay, I’m guessing that he’s probably a decent guy), but he had no business being in that game on Sunday. And that is Mike Martz’s bad business. And that’s why the Packers gave the Bears the business.