Baseball Magazine

The Conundrum That is Jay Cutler

By Beardandstache @BeardAndStache

The Conundrum That is Jay Cutler

Photo: Jonathan Daniel - Getty Images

- Troy Ballard
It's not easy being Jay Cutler.
Think of the sideways comments, the unfair expectations, the constant battery of criticism from every media outlet from Chicago to Bangladesh -- Cutler has it tough. Not to say that other players in the NFL don't deal with this same kind of pressure and rigorous lifestyle (see: Tony Romo).
However, Cutler's different.
It's a constant battle with myself on my own opinion of the dude. On Monday I wake up singing Cutler's praises, then on Tuesday I call him a scourge on humanity. This trend will continue throughout the week, and then the following Monday, the cycle repeats.
Right now, I happen to be feeling incredibly apologetic towards him. Tomorrow I could feel like if he uses the right tools, works on his game and stops being so.. Cutler.. he could be an elite quarterback.
With the above mentioned in mind, here's my dilemma: I don't understand Jay Cutler.
It's the conundrum of all conundrums. Because, the vast majority of the time, I understand professional athletes. It's easy for me to breakdown and explain why and how they do things. But with Cutler, my mind draws a blank, and I end up becoming frustrated trying to understand him.
A perfect example is when this season began, Cutler was talking like a king. All his shiny new toys like Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery and his new offense were just what the doctor ordered. He had enough swagger to out-swag the entire Old Spice line of deodorant. ESPN featured an article in which Cutler was boasted as being a changed man — one of confidence. And it showed in his play in week one.
Cutler steam-rolled Indianapolis and showed flashes of being what many analysts call A Prime Cutler (actually, no analysts said that, and I just made it up). That swagger was inflated ten-fold going into week two against a much more talented Green Bay Packers team.
And you know what Cutler said? Bring it on, Green Bay.
And you know what Green Bay did? The entire team brought it on, wiping Chicago and making Cutler look like a total and complete fool. After he was brought back down to planet earth, Cutler turned back into what other analysts call A Tainted Cutler (again, made up).
That aura of confidence that had been present before totally dissolved, and before we knew it, Cutler was just being same-old Cutler. For those that went into the season with dazzling hopes and high spirits that Jay was finally starting anew, this latest revelation is discouraging, to say the least.
We all know what happens when Cutler is unhappy. We all know that he looks more like a lost high school kid playing varsity than an NFL talent. We all know that when Cutler gets in one of these funks, the Bears don't win too many games.
And this is why I don't understand him. This is why I have such a difficult time liking him or hating him, depending on the day. Because he's just so damn tough to read and predict. There's no consistency, and yet there is. There's no guarantees, but yet there is.
Cutler is Cutler, and I've given up trying to understand him. Trying to analyze him. Trying to judge him. He's always going to be Jay, and there's nothing that can change that. The Bears are married to this fluctuating style of personality for the rest of eternity. That means that we as fans are too.
Good luck, Chicago. You'll need it.
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