The Chicago Bears have yet to name their Week 15 starter for the upcoming game against the Cleveland Browns and there appears to be a reason for that. Bears head coach Marc Trestman has a pretty big decision on his hands when it comes to choosing a starting quarterback for Sunday and while Josh McCown is winning over hearts and minds with his play, Trestman remains optimistic that Cutler will start.
Trestman says he is “optimstic” Cutler starts Sunday
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) December 11, 2013
This is Trestman doing two different things at once. On the one hand he’s saying Cutler’s ankle is starting to look better than it has in the past few weeks but he’s also publicly letting Jay Cutler and his agents know that this is still Cutler’s football team. With his contract expiring after the season and a franchise tag so expensive it makes no sense to use it, Chicago needs to work out a contract with their quarterback and the negotiations are starting now.
Cutler is going to draw significant interest in free agency from teams like the Titians, Vikings, Buccanneers and anyone else in desperate need of a franchise quarterback. But the Bears are trying to downplay the hype surrounding Josh McCown taking over the quarterback role and are sending a signal straight to Cutler’s camp that this is not McCown’s team, even if he’s playing pretty well.
We’ll likely know more about Cutler’s status for this upcoming week after he practices some more but these comments run deeper than committing to a quarterback in the short term.