The Chicago Bears fell short of the playoffs in the final game of the regular season, and changes needed to be made towards next season to take the next step.
With their two quarterbacks set to enter free agency — Jay Cutler and Josh McCown — the Bears needed to make a decision on who to keep for the long term and they renewed their trust in Cutler, giving him a seven-year deal.
While it was widely expected that the Bears were going to choose Cutler over McCown, this is a very risky move by the organization. Cutler never reached the ceiling many expected he had, and he will be 37-years old in the final year of his deal, making it almost impossible that he can live up to his whole contract.
Moreover, things get complicated if Cutler’s tenure with the Bears is analyzed a bit deeper. He has missed at least one game per year since his arrival to the team and when he was sidelined this year, he was severely outplayed by McCown in every statistical measure.
Cutler has also shown an inability to come through in the clutch and even though the team has several prolific players on offense like Matt Forte and Brandon Marshall, it doesn’t matter much if the signal-caller can’t lead them to victory.
There is little doubt that Cutler is a reliable option at QB and he was far better than any option in free agency or the draft. Based on his age and terms of the deal, however, it is clear the Bears took a huge risk giving him such a long contract.