The Windy City Welcomes Jay Cutler
Jay Cutler will now be wearing a new blue and orange. On Thursday afternoon, the Pro Bowl quarterback was traded to the Chicago Bears from Denver in exchange for a 2009 and 2010 first-round draft pick, the Bears 2009 third-round draft pick, as well as QB Kyle Orton.
The Bears also received the Broncos 2009 fifth-round pick (previously the Seahawks pick attained by Denver last year) along with Cutler.
Already the question has arose as to who got the better end of the deal. Looking at it short-term, without a doubt the Bears are on the winning side. Chicago hasn't had a "franchise" QB since the Sid Luckman days, or arguably since Jim McMahon.
Cutler was unhappy in Denver and considering that Denver has a lot of options with the many draft picks they attained in this deal, they could potentially find a replacement. Kyle Orton can also give them some decent success at the quarterback position.
All in all though, if I was a Bears fan, I'd be very, very happy right now.
To add to the addition of Cutler the Bears have recently also added former Browns offensive lineman Kevin Shaffer as well as future Hall-of-Famer Orlando Pace to their offensive line to protect for Cutler.
Offensive lineman Chris Williams, the Bears 2008 first-round draft pick, is also expected to be healthy this year and is predicted to live up to his first round potential. Not to mention Chris Williams guarded Jay Cutler in college for Vanderbilt.
On that note, Earl Bennett is expected to be the Bears' No. 2 receiver this year who was Jay Cutler's favorite target at Vanderbilt.
That said, it's hard to tell just how much success Cutler is capable of with the weapons he has in Chicago. Devin Hester is expected to be the No. 1 guy at the receiver spot for Chicago this season and with his speed he can be an incredible weapon, all depends on his hands.
But now with a quarterback who can throw it accurately beyond 30 yards, who knows what Hester's capabilities will be. The addition of Cutler will also greatly affect the success of Matt Forte.
After having such a successful season last year, with Cutler now behind center, defenses won't be allowed to stack the box on Forte which will open up the running game significantly.
Not to mention Forte is a first-class receiver along with his running abilities. Greg Olsen will also see his numbers increase now having Cutler throwing to him.
Another question to ask is how will Chicago change their mentality now having a Pro Bowl quarterback on their roster.
Offensive Coordinator Ron Turner could be a good fit for Jay Cutler as he has the offensive mindset to throw it deep, although that hasn't been seen in the Bears playbook very much in the past, but it's safe to say it will be implemented this season for Chicago.
Lovie Smith is also a hard headed guy and chances are he's not going to switch his run first, pass second mindset immediately. But, with a quarterback like Cutler, it's very easy to see Lovie changing his mind on that in due time.
In the end, Cutler and the Bears will both have to adapt their game styles to fit each other and I'm sure it will result in profound success for the Bears.
As far as where the Bears are headed immediately, in the NFC North, it's pretty easy to say that this deal most likely will bring them to the playoffs.
With a couple good pickups at the wide receiver position, whether it be via the draft or free agency, and a little more help on the defensive side of the ball, the Bears could very well be a Super Bowl contender in the near future. Only time will tell.
At the end of the day I think most, if not all, Bears fans will sleep easily for the next couple months with the long overdue notion of having a franchise QB finally on their roster. Enjoy it Chicago, you deserve it.
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