Multiple outlets are reporting that Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler has been cleared by an independent neurologist and will play tomorrow against the Minnesota Vikings. While the Bears haven’t officially named their starting quarterback tomorrow, if Lovie Smith chooses to play Jason Campbell he may want to check himself into a mental institution.
Cutler has taken some major shots this season. The illegal and cheap shot he took at the hands of Tim Dobbins of the Houston Texans was the knockout punch in the second quarter of that contest two-weeks earlier. While Cutler finished the first half, he was pulled after displaying symptoms of the concussion. When the Bears played the San Francisco 49ers last Monday night, Cutler didn’t even make the trip. He practiced Thursday and Friday this past week, so this seems more like a technicality and less of a shock.
Two weeks ago, it looked as if the NFC North was going to be a two-team race, but the Vikings have managed to crawl back into the conversation. If the Bears lose tomorrow, they’ll fall to third place behind the Vikings and Green Bay Packers. A few weeks earlier, this seemed like a long-shot at best.
While I’m happy that Cutler will play and it helps the Bears’ chances, I really hope he’s 100 percent. As we’re learning, former players that suffered multiple concussions are dealing with the long-term effects of these injuries. I believe the NFL needs to crack down even harder on the illegal hits that are causing these types of injuries.
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