Bears sign Jay Cutler to seven-year contract

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Jay Cutler is locked in as the Bears’ franchise quarterback.

The Bears announced today that Cutler, whose previous contract expired at the end of this season, will not be testing free agency. Instead, Cutler has signed a seven-year contract, keeping him in place with the Bears through the 2020 season.

There’s a very good chance that the 30-year-old Cutler will remain with the Bears for the rest of his career.

Although there was some talk that Cutler could end up leaving in free agency, he and new coach Marc Trestman appeared to mesh this season, and Trestman never wavered on his belief that Cutler is the right man to run his offense, even as backup Josh McCown put up better statistics when he filled in after Cutler got hurt.

In announcing the new contract, Bears General Manager Phil Emery called Cutler “a demonstrated winner” and said 2013 was his best season because of his “leadership, his improvement, his display of toughness.”

Now the Bears are counting on Cutler to remain the leader of their team for years to come.

92 responses to “Bears sign Jay Cutler to seven-year contract

  1. I do find Cutler a bit of an enigma. I think the biggest knock against him is, like Romo, he just can’t get you a Super Bowl ring. I do gotta say that there sure are quite a number of a lot worse QBs out there.

  2. Career 155 TD’s vs 112 Int’s…. not overly eye-popping stats so I hope the Bears didn’t overpay.

  3. My team might be looking for a QB upgrade and I’m very glad Cutler won’t be available. He wouldn’t be an upgrade over other average veteran starters.

  4. Good for the Bears, putting confidence in your starting QB is the best way to build your team. The Browns should take notes on this

  5. Wow, their grand strategy for the next seven years must be based on trying to throw as many interceptions as possible

  6. Kinda sad, all this guy does is throw it to Brandon Marshall. Patriots had a similar scenario with Bledsoe Brady , or even 49rs with Kapernick and Smith. You always stick with your hot hand , no ones entitled to a job. This will cost Chicago big time

  7. How much is the question. Has Chicago now joined the host of teams that hamstring themselves cap wise for years with $20 million a year QB’s ?

  8. Cutler has been an amazingly average QB sense 2009 according to his QBR. 7 years is too long of a contract for a QB that will be below average long before his contract is up.

  9. Thought they put him back in to determine whether he could lead them back to playoffs which he did not. Guess they figure it wasn’t the offense but the defense which stunk it up. Still, lot of money to tie up in a QB when you need lots of D help.

  10. I realize having a franchise quarterback, even if he’s a second-tier one, is crucial in today’s NFL. But this seems to be a lot of time for a quarterback who’s already injury prone at 30, how bad is it going to be once he’s 34 or 35? I hope they have a good opt-out on this.

  11. Chuckle Chuckle. Green Bay and the rest of the NFC north thanks you. I hope the money his huge so it eats up a ton of caps space too.

  12. Ugh, now who r my raiders supposE to go after? Mark sanchez? Matt schaub? Josh freeman?. . . The free agent Qb market sucks this year, just our luck.

  13. Not having a franchise QB can set you back. Worst case scenario they dump Cutler after 3-4 years. McCown is NOT a long term replacement and finding a new franchise QB can take a long time, so it was a smart move.

  14. Not a huge fan but seriously what would be a better option at this point. There are a lot of teams struggling to find even a competent QB and he has the potential to be very good. If they had a decent D this year they would still be playing this weekend. Now draft a young QB every year until you find one to push him out.

  15. If they didn’t overpay him, it’s not a bad move, particularly if you look at the other QB options out there.

  16. it’s amusing that Packers fans are “thanking god” for Cutlers resigning.

    I hate to remind you that Cutler just beat you. You won the game because you finally managed to score on the worst defense in the history of the Bears. Congratulations!!

    It’s going to be a nice run for the Bears after the Defense is upgraded even slightly.

  17. What a waste of money.What has he done since he has been there? This is a bit like Flacco and his enormous payment this year, what did Baltimore do this year, nothing!! He’s an accident waiting to happen.

  18. Not a Bears fan or an avid Cutler supporter, but realistically, name a QB the Bears could get for next year who is better given their cap space and draft picks… wait for it… exactly, they had to sign him and the $ makes sense given the situation.

  19. 7 years? Ay ay ay. Bears fans, prepare for more than half a decade of continued underachievement and mediocrity.

    Bears successes in recent years can be pointed to defensive support and offense that can do juuust enough to get by, but not enough to be a great team. This year we saw what happens when they dont have a good defense. And with Marhall, Jeffrey and Forte their offense should be WAY better than one that does just enough to get by.

  20. Wow, that didn’t take long. Well, this is a smart move by Chicago. I think with the moves by the front office (improved offensive line and wide receivers) and this new coaching staff will only make Cutler better going forward.

  21. I would have let Cutler walk and Keep Mcnown and draft a QB. McNown threw to Marshal like Cutler does but also throws a lot to Bennet and the rising star of the bears jeffries.. Oops sorry bout that the ex rising start of the bear jeffries. Cutler does not throw to him….

    How about dallas send you austin and we take jeffries to pair with Dez?

  22. I’m not so sure why most people are coming down so hard on this signing. I’ve been a Bears fan for years and I’ve seen way too many subpar QB’s at the helm in Chicago. Whether it’s been the numerous first round busts or the Kordell Stewart’s, Rick Mirer type signings that have never worked out.
    Chicago hasn’t had an offense as explosive as this one in many, many years. While I’ll admit Cutler isn’t in the top tier of QB’s in the league, I feel he’s just below that and can manage this offense very confidently and effectively. I like knowing we have a QB that has all of the tools to potentially bring a championship to Chicago. He just needs to put it all together and with Trestman & him going into their second season together, I feel the offense is finally going in the right direction after many years where that wasn’t the case. Beyond that, who else is out there at the QB position that is available that could step in and be better for this team??? Happy Bears fan.

  23. good move. Even if they let Cutler walk there isn’t a good selection of QBs to choose from as there nothing in free agency and them holding the #14 pick may not demand a franchise QB or willingness to develop one. They want to contend and this is there best option as McCown isn’t gonna be around much longer. This gives them chance to maybe towards the end of this contract to develop a replacement and set up for the Cutler post era

  24. What’s that noise you hear? It’s the sound of thousands of Bears fans screaming in anger because Cutler just got a “full career extension”! I can hear it all the way from Indiana. 😉

  25. As a Charger fan I used to love Jay Cutler being on the Broncos as he is directly responsible for a lot of Chargers playoff berths due to him being the biggest competition in the division.

    The fact is the Packers have his number the same way the Chargers did. Mentally this guy finds ways to crumble against his biggest rival.

    As I said to my Bears coworker, all this move does is prepare you to get owned by the Packers and Aaron Rodgers for the next 7 years.

  26. All my Bears friends can’t stand Cutler but i see a few fans are still drinking the Kool-aid.

    In fairness….Cutler was good on an episode of The League.

  27. The Bears had to do it, if they didn’t sign Cutler, the Vikings would have done it thinking they finally have a QB, a mistaken thought they had many times before.

  28. He is far better then anyone the Vikings will get, he is better then the franchise QB the Lions have.
    He is not better then Rogers. But who do the Bears have access to that is? Maybe and only maybe, Brees or Brady or P Manning are better then Rogers, and that is debatable and none of them are going to be Bears any time soon. So stick with this guy I say.

    He is instrumental in making Marshall the player he is for the Bears. You cannot leave that out of the decision. He and Marshall are both interesting guys, but together they are great. You do not want to upset that as the Bears leadership, cause your not going to go find another Marshall either.

    If they can keep the other QB under contract that would be perfect.

  29. I am so weary of 1 percenters in Green Bay who have been fortunate to have 20 years in a row of outstanding QB play. The Bears have needed an offense to compete with Green Bay for years and it is clear that Jay Cutler gives them the best chance to do that. Had it not been for a historically bad defense and unbelievable calls going in favor of GB (for the whole year), Packer fans would be to hung over to even notice this signing. I absolutely love Green Bay…the actual body of water…but can’t stand the Packers. Go Niners!

  30. Cutler is a good QB. I am a Packers fan, but I see Cutler as one of the better QBs in the league. Is he the greatest ever? No, but those are not easy to find. Maybe they could have let him go and picked up Mark Sanchez or something? LOL

    Bears are lucky to have Jay. Plenty of teams would have loved to see him hit the market, especially the Texans.

  31. So, Cutler is 1-9 vs the Packers…

    Seven yr extension…

    Excuse me, doing the math here….

    7 years times twice a year = 14

    So, Rodgers will now be 23 – 1 against Cutler

    Nice.

  32. To all the Packers fans having a laugh at this signing. Yes you’ve had an impressive run against the Bears and Cutler the past several seasons, but let’s not lose sight of the fact you won that last game due to the poor defense of the Bears while Cutler was on the sideline with the lead. If anything, Cutler was just as impressive as Rogers was during this game. The Bears secondary let Cobb run completely open for Rogers to lob up a fairly easy pass for the winning TD. Let’s not also lose sight the Packers defense is nothing to write home about either and you’re probably going to some issues with the 49ers offense and their much better defense. I’ll give you that Rogers is an elite QB and one that can make things happen but you’re going to have a tough time with your defense in the playoffs.

  33. Cutler will never take the Bears to the Promised Land. They’ve given Cutler everything he has ever asked for. Brandon Marshall. Old college teammates. Probably even some old college cheerleaders. But the guy’s body language is not going to inspire anyone except the opposing team’s defense. Somewhere along his development, Cutler thought being emotionless was cool.

  34. I’ll preface my comment by saying I’m not a Bears fan so this isn’t a homer rant.

    I’m amused at the folks saying the rest of the NFC North or the entire NFL is applauding and/or laughing at this deal. I’d say the Bears are lucky since the Jets, Vikings, Browns, and Bucs (among others) would’ve paid more and likely have guaranteed a lot more money (assuming the Bears included smart guarantees). Would they have been laughed at? In some cities, absolutely.

    It’s pretty hard to laugh at them or say the Bears are run by poor businessmen. Supply and demand plays a big part in this. The Bears have an except RB, two outstanding WRs – in short, more weapons than they’ve seen in a long time. Cutler isn’t Rodgers/Brady/Manning/Brees – not many teams are the rare combo of smart & lucky enough to secure an elite QB. However, he is talented and it isn’t a giant leap of faith in hoping that Tressman can squeeze at least a couple of pseudo-elite seasons out of him that, with an improved D (and the requisite lucky breaks and good overall health), could lead to big things.

    Their other options include rolling the dice on McCown, signing a Schaub/Freeman/Sanchez, trading for Mallet/Cousins, or drafting a QB and hoping a 2nd or 3rd round pick turns out to be a Drew Brees or even a Nick Foles instead of Quincy Carter or someone who struggles at first like Geno Smith (assuming he improves).

    Let’s not forget that full terms of the deal haven’t been released. If they gave him a “smaller” signing bonus than the other huge contracts in return for the $18MM AAV over the first three (possibly fully guaranteed), they did pretty well. Let’s say it’s a $20MM – that’s not even $12MM in dead money after the first three years. Even $30MM won’t be a crippling hit if they dump him after the first three years. It would be amusing if the same people that are currently trolling Bears fans with sarcastic comments are later lauding the deal if it turns out the Bears did essentially sign him to a smart deal that’s essentially three years with a manageable buy out and cap hit if Cutler doesn’t prove his worth or even regresses.

    Besides, the only thing the Bears are trying to manage is his effect on the cap. They could pay him $30MM per and not care, cash isn’t an issue for the majority of NFL owners. Hell I wouldn’t be at all surprised to hear that guys who signed elite-yet-manageable deals (like Rodgers) or that re-negotiate to friendlier terms after their elite deal (Brady) also received a couple suitcases stuffed with $15MM in cash, money that came out of anonymous/untraceable overseas accounts that the owner has. Good for them. It’s funny when the righteous NFL fan expresses outrage when I say that. My response? For one, welcome to being an NFL fan, I’m glad you started following during the boom of the last decade. Two, even your golden sport is filled with corruption and cheating like what I just mentioned – cut out the righteous indignation and your child-like notion that this sport is fair & pure, a balanced league with great gladiators giving it their all. HGH and other PEDs are rampant – even your favorite old school ideals player (for example, London Fletcher – who I happen to really admire) likely used things to stay in shape and effective all these years. Good for him, he was never caught. Salary cap-circumventing playoffs are common. New pain killer addictions develop in every locker room each month. Every team will cheat (send spies with cameras to practices, steal signals, and generally subvert every rule) every single time if they’re even somewhat certain that they won’t get caught. Your team is no better than any other.

    Okay, I digressed a hair. My apologies.

  35. I really don’t understand this signing. Exactly what has Cutler done? If he were five years younger, the usual platitudes about how “he needs to learn to read defenses, he needs to mature, he needs to trust his teammates, he great upside because of his arm, he makes some spectacular throws…blah blah blah” could be argued, but he has consistently thrown terrible interceptions and failed in big games. Sure, Brett Favre threw bad interceptions, but he also won playoff games and a Super Bowl. Can Cutler really get the Bears there? On top of it all, he has become injury-prone. It’s clear that he has peaked. I think the Bears will regret the move.

  36. At least he seems to have grown out of the crybaby phase, but he still is not good enough to hitch to your wagon.
    Local radio talk show nailed it today. Cutler is probably #12 in QBs across the league. He’s good for a few games, then gets hurt, then is fantastic, then takes himself out and says he’s hurt.
    I loved it when Orten started tearing it up in Denver following the trade. Chicago fans should brace themselves for games like the last one for a long time. If that’s what you really, really want…..

  37. Seven years? Bad decision for this guy. He’s got physical talent but I just can’t get over that constant blank no confidencelook in his eyes. Some guys have it – Manning, Brees, Rogers. You can just tell they’re running the show. This guy always looks like he’s trying to not **ck up instead of lead.

  38. The owner of the Bears has to be a blooming idiot… He ain’t that great a QB and he has only showed little flashes… Little flashes ain’t demonstrated leadership…

  39. One glaring stat folks don’t see. Cutler is just a few comeback wins behind the all time leader John Elway in half the time. So he’s basically a lock @ being a hall of famer.

    Another thing. Everyone seems to neglect the fact the defense was decimated with injury. That’s all I heard from MSM sports commentators on how lousy the defense was. Yeah sure a defense without Briggs, a hampered Peppers and a few other key defensive players hobbled with injury.

    Yep that 48 yard Rogers to Cobb TD was all Cutlers fault.

  40. Lets hope Trestman doesn’t stick with his high powered CFL offense scheme and his Lovey bend but don’t break defensive scheme. That formula will take the bears on a ride in Mr. Peabodys “Way Back Machine” to the Abe Gibbron daze.

  41. It would take a Packer fan to think Cutler & Marshall were college teammates. I’ve heard this stated as fact ever since Marshall came from Miami. Marshall is a hell of a talent but I doubt he could have gotten accepted to Vanderbilt with UCF grades.

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