(CBS) Today is a significant anniversary in Bears’ history. Six years ago, on April 2, 2009, Chicago sent quarterback Kyle Orton and 2009 and 2010 first-round draft picks along with a third-round draft pick to Denver for quarterback Jay Cutler and a 2009 fifth-round draft pick.
Cutler has held down the starting job (save for one game) in Chicago since his arrival, going 45-39 as a starter (that total includes his 1-1 playoff record), guiding the Bears to one division title and an NFC Championship game appearance. In a scene symbolic of his up-and-down tenure in Chicago, Cutler suffered a torn MCL in that NFC title game against the Packers in January 2011 and couldn’t finished the contest.
Green Bay won 21-14. In the moment, Cutler received a great deal of criticism for not playing through the pain, though the conversation changed later when it was discovered how severe the injury was.
Through it all, Cutler ranks first in team history in passing yards (18,275), passing attempts (2,651) and completions (1,628), while he’s second in touchdowns (129) and interceptions (93).
In January 2014, former general manager Phil Emery extended Cutler with a seven-year, $126-million deal with $54 million guaranteed. At the time of the deal, Cutler had the league’s highest cap number for a quarterback in the 2014 season, a campaign in which he led the NFL in turnovers.
On the other end of the deal, the Broncos used the 2009 first-round pick on defensive end Robert Ayers and bundled the third-round pick in a deal that netted them tight end Richard Quinn and guard Seth Olsen. In 2010, the Broncos traded the pick they acquired from the Bears and eventually ended up with wide receivers Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker and quarterback Tim Tebow.
What we want to know, Bears fans, is — with hindsight — would you make the trade again if you were the decision-maker? Vote in the poll below.