Let’s face it, no one wants to beat a dead horse. But whether it be in Denver or in Chicago, the Jay Cutler Chicago train has left the station again with another injury and the hopes of Bears fans witnessing another mediocre season.
But evidence has shown this season, that teams are winning games despite who their starting quarterback may be.
Look at the New York Jets, the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles, who currently have quarterbacks that would not be considered “elite”.
Then there are those times with “elite” quarterbacks with horrible performances such as the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Baltimore Ravens and the New York Giants, all Super Bowl winners.
The Chicago Bears have never had a real solid backup quarterback in a long time. However, with a veteran quarterback in Josh McCown, the Bears can prevail without Jay Cutler under center. Let’s look at the five reasons why this is possible.
1. Solid quarterback in Josh McCown
With 11 years under his belt in the NFL, he knows how to act in the huddle. Calm and focused, McCown will be doing his job by finding his receivers and making plays on the run. He wants a win as much as Cutler does and he will do everything possible to get it. Even though he is not a deep thrower, he will move the ball down the field to get points on the board.
2. Offense will continue to protect the quarterback
The restructured offense will not change its responsibility to protect the quarterback no matter who he is. They have the same respect and confidence in McCown’s ability to get the ball out as quickly as possible. This will be an advantage for McCown who will enjoy the time he needs to make plays happen.
3. Defense will step up and make a statement
The Bears' defense started off strong and then became plagued with injuries. But they have some good play makers there and have the ability to stop the run, force fumbles and pressure the opposing quarterback. This is a given no matter who is under center. But they will need to give McCown an opportunity to make touchdowns and not stay out on the field. Defensive coach Mel Tucker will need to pound that in as a constant performance each week.
4. Division titles motivate players
It’s been six years since The Bears won their division and the only way that will happen again is to beat the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions going forward. This needs to happen in all phases with or without Cutler.
To win a Monday Night game in Lambeau Field will scream volumes that the Bears want to own the NFC West division. QB Aaron Rodgers is 0-2 on Monday Night Football and 8-0 on all other nights against the Bears. This has to change no matter with or without Cutler.
5. Marc Trestman has whispered in McCown’s ear too
Trestman is not a one-trick pony coach. He holds the same standard and expectations for both his quarterbacks. This is why he has such confidence in McCown’s ability to do his job on the field. He worked with him as well as quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh and offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer. Trestman’s goal is to win and he will make every effort to do so with the team he has grown to respect.
It is very possible that the Chicago Bears can win the next 2-3 games without Cutler, but it will be based on the completion of all phases and the determination of the entire Bears team to make it happen.