Memo To Jets: Just Say No to Cutler

Gary G.Correspondent IApril 2, 2009

Why would Jets fans want a whiny quarterback trying to lead their offense in the biggest sports market in the world? If little things, like being involved in trade talks, get to him this badly in Denver, what is it going to be like when he goes on a bad streak during the season and the New York media begins to grill him?

Yeah, this kid is as talented as they come, but it takes more than talent to succeed in the NFL, especially at the quarterback position. When you simply are not there mentally, and you are unable to push aside the little things in this business that can bother you, then it's hard to believe you will ever have success in this city.

A report came out earlier this morning that stated that the Denver Broncos are asking for two first-round draft picks in return for Cutler. One high-profile NFL agent said it could take more.

"I could see a first and a second this year, and a first next year," said a high-profile NFL agent. "If you're looking at some unknown kid in the draft, you'd much rather have Cutler. You're talking about a quarterback who's athletic and talented. The only question on this kid is maturity, but he's going to grow from this."

The New York Daily News reported late last night that the Jets spent Wednesday formulating a plan to acquire the 25-year old quarterback.

You think trading two first-round picks is all it will take? Try a brand new hefty contract too. Cutler signed a six-year, $47.86 million deal when he was drafted as a rookie out of Vanderbilt in 2006. It's hard to believe that he will show up after a trade to a new team without getting a new deal signed and play for what would be his current 2009 salary at $1.035 million.

I think the only question that needs to be resolved with Cutler is how will he cut it in the big city? Will he ever mature enough or will the little murmurs from fans on talk radio or constant nagging by sports reporters get to him when he's in a bad streak?

Personally, I am against trading for Cutler. Right now, the best thing that is on my side is the fact that the Broncos would like to trade him out of the conference, and right now, the Redskins appear to be as interested.

I can only hope Daniel Snyder will find a way to screw himself out of another solid draft class by trading away several picks this year and next year for Cutler, to ease the mind of Jets fans like myself. Snyder also has the money to give him that contract that he will desire as well.

I know what most Jets fans are saying, "the Jets haven't won a championship in over 40 years and we want to win now." Well, doesn't everybody? Sacrificing two first-round picks and handing out a mega-deal to a quarterback is hardly the way to do it.

Think about what this team currently needs other than a quarterback. Their entire defensive line will all be 30-plus years of age come the start of the 2009 season. They have a void at wide receiver opposite Jerricho Cotchery with the departure of Laveranues Coles.

They only have one tight end on the roster (Dustin Keller), and they are going to be in the market for another running back soon with Thomas Jones likely either heading out the door or simply just for the fact that he'll be 31-years old this season. With a significant amount of voids to fill now and for the future, the Jets would be wise keeping all of the draft picks they can for this year and any future drafts.

I'm a firm believer in giving people second chances, and to a lesser extent, a first opportunity. Kellen Clemens and Brett Ratliff have never been given a fair chance in the regular season to run the offense with this current offensive line and the AFC-leading rusher behind them. I want to see what these two players can do. Surround them with another wide receiver from the draft and throw them out on the field.

Kellen Clemens opportunity in 2007 was not a fair shot. Working behind an offensive line that consisted of a Adrien Clarke at left guard and Anthony Clement starting at right tackle is not exactly the same as what 2008 brought when the Jets replaced those two players with former first-round picks Alan Faneca and Damien Woody.

In addition to Clarke and Clement's poor play, it did not allow Thomas Jones to play to his fullest abilities without any holes opening up, as such they did in 2008, when he became the AFC's leading rusher.

Naturally, without a good offensive line and a running game to open up the pass, no quarterback is going to succeed. Clemens took the opportunity, but honestly did not do a terrible job with it, going 3-5 in eight starts in a 4-12 season.

One of those games included a game against his current head coach Rex Ryan in Baltimore, down 17-3 in the fourth quarter. Had it not been for three drops (one by Laveranues Coles, two by Justin McCareins), the Jets would have come out on top of that one.  In case you missed it, here's the video:

Jets fans have been misled by Clemens performance in the 2007 season and are simply not giving this guy a fair opportunity. Instead, they see a former first-round pick, who can throw the ball as far as Brett Favre, and gawk at the idea of having him as their franchise quarterback, even if it means giving up two or three top draft picks.

If you are a believer in Rex Ryan and his defense, you would know that it doesn't take a stud quarterback behind center to make it deep in the playoffs. Just ask Joe Flacco who took his team to the AFC Championship in his first season...or Trent Dilfer, who has a ring to show for it.