Michael McCaskey attended the annual Brian Piccolo awards ceremony Thursday morning at Halas Hall and the chairman of the board is still beaming three weeks to the day after the Bears traded for Jay Cutler.
"I join with all the Bears fans who are looking forward to the coming season,'' McCaskey said.
General manager Jerry Angelo admitted he was genuinely surprised by the celebration by fans after the blockbuster trade. McCaskey perhaps has a better understanding of the position. Asked if a deal this big would come to the desk in his office before it was approved, he said yes.
"We paid a big price,'' McCaskey said. "Not only the draft picks, but Kyle Orton was a promising young quarterback and a great teammate in the locker room."
Still, it was a no-brainer for the Bears. The players were at work on the practice fields participating in voluntary workouts in the morning. Offensive coordinator Ron Turner said Cutler has been in the building almost every day for three or four hours working to learn the system.
The Bears' record book doesn't have many numbers that jump out at you at quarterback. Cutler essentially has less than 2 1/2 seasons starting in the NFL and his numbers are well on their way to passing those of Sid Luckman.
Cutler (2006 to 2008) 1,220 attempts, 762 completions, 62.5 percent, 9,024 yards, 54 TD, 37 INT, 87.1 rating
Luckman (1939 to 1950) 1,744 attempts, 904 completions, 51.8 percent, 14,686 yards, 137 TD, 132 INT, 75.0 rating
"We have hopes that people will mention Sid Luckman and Jay Cutler in the same breath after his career is over,'' McCaskey said.
He sure would know who to compare Cutler against.