The debate over Jay Cutler’s injury has been constant and heated since he was removed during the third quarter of the Chicago Bears’ loss to the Green Bay Packers.
Immediately following Cutler’s removal from the game, current and former NFL players, along with fans questioned Cutler’s toughness and commitment. A response that didn’t sit well with Bears’ players, coaches and front office personnel.
When the MRI results came back on Cutler’s knee indicating that he had suffered a Grade II sprain of his medial collateral ligament, some of the critical players and fans reversed their stances. Maurice Jones-Drew, of the Jacksonville Jaguars even said that he was joking when he tweeted “Hey I think the urban meyer rule is effect right now… When the going gets tough……..QUIT.”
The circumstances of Cutler’s injury, the way it was handled and Cutler’s post-injury “activity” on the sideline have all been discussed at great length over the last two days.
Jason Whitlock, of FOX Sports, wrote one of the most scathing columns regarding the situation. In it, Whitlock made reference to Cutler quitting on the Bears and the city of Chicago. “Hiding behind a knee injury, he tapped out in much the same way LeBron James tapped out with an elbow injury against the Celtics during last year’s playoffs,” Whitlock said in his column.
While some reversed their opinion of Cutler after the MRI, Whitlock made it clear that he would not be among them when he wrote: “I’m sorry. I don’t need an MRI to confirm King Cutler quit.”
Whitlock dug himself even deeper on one side of this issue when he joined the Boers and Bernstein Show to defend his column. Claiming that he wasn’t questioning Cutler’s toughness, but his passion for the game, Whitlock told Boers and Bernstein that “[Cutler] didn’t have the right mental attitude from kickoff on.”
Throughout his career, Cutler’s leadership have been questioned.
“You play the quarterback position, it’s a leadership position,” Whitlock said. “Your body language, your mental approach, all of that is very important. Jay Cutler doesn’t have the mental makeup. He doesn’t carry himself in a way that’s appropriate for an NFL quarterback…What happened on Sunday is another symptom of what people have been saying.”
Whitlock went on to say that if Cutler really had a passion for football he would have found a way to get back on the field. What fight Cutler did put up with trainers and coaches on Sunday, according to Whitlock, wasn’t enough.
The conversation that followed, covered virtually every angle of the issues revolving around the injury, and from two opposing sides.