Cutler, Bears Shine against Orton, Broncos in Denver
The Chicago Bears trounced the Denver Broncos 27-17 in Denver on Sunday night. In a battle between quarterbacks traded for each other in the off-season, Cutler clearly had the upper hand.
Jay Cutler caused a stink when new Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels tried to acquire Matt Cassell (his former quarterback with the Patriots where McDaniels was the offensive coordinator) from New England during the off-season. When the Patriots traded Cassell to Kansas City and not Denver, Cutler told the team that he wanted out. After attempts by McDaniels to ease tensions with Cutler failed, the Bears pulled off the trade for Cutler by trading away Kyle Orton and 1st round draft picks in each of the 2009 and 2010 NFL drafts. The Bears were ecstatic that they now had their “franchise quarterback” and he showed just how good he can be on Sunday against his former team. Cutler completed 15 of 21 passes for 144 yards and 1 touchdown – good for a 106.1 passer rating. Cutler had all of his weapons at his disposal – Devon Hester, Earl Bennett, Greg Olsen, Desmond Clark and Matt Forte out of the backfield. The Bears showed signs of having a dynamic offense – mixing up the runs and passes and rolling out Cutler to take advantage of his athleticism. The Bears gotta be loving this. The Broncos fans booed Cutler every time he touched the ball, but he was largely unfazed – “This isn’t your everyday situation… We knew coming into this it was going to be a hostile environment, which was good. It’s good preparation for us… It went well… I love where I’m at in Chicago. I think we’re heading in the right direction offensively.”
Matt Forte rushed for 21 yards and 1 score. He also had 3 receptions for 24 yards, 1 of which was a 6-yard touchdown pass from Cutler. Devon Hester also showed signs of his old punt return self – a 54-yard burst down the middle of the field towards the right sideline that set up a Bears score. The Bears play their final pre-season game this Thursday against the Cleveland Browns at Soldier Field.
As for the Broncos, Kyle Orton completed 12 of 16 passes for 96 yards. He did not have any touchdowns or interceptions and he left the game when he cut his index finger on his right throwing hand after a pass attempt. The Broncos are 0-3 and have been outscored by their opponents 71-46 during the pre-season. Not good.