Chicago Sun-Times

McMahon says Cutler relies too much on his "cannon"

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Former Bears quarterback Jim McMahon doesn't watch many games anymore. But he hasn't been impressed with Jay Cutler.

"I haven't seen him play a lot. Just what I see on ESPN," McMahon told the Sun-Times. "Seems to me he relies too much on his cannon, instead of his instincts and reads.

"When they show replays of his picks, it's like, 'What are you thinking?' "

McMahon, the fifth overall pick of the Bears in 1982, helped the Bears win Super Bowl XX.

He was traded to the San Diego Chargers after the 1988 season.

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Look, I like Jay Cutler and you can all say what you will. I know that a lot of you will hate on Jimmy Mac for saying this but you are the same ones that loved his candor when he was a player. And let's be honest, the guy might not have had the best arm in football but he was a proven winner. All he did was win wherever he went and played. He just couldn't stay healthy. If Cutler is half the QB Jim McMahon was I will be a very happy Bears fan.

That A-Boy Jim: Tell Cutler Like A Real Super Bowl Quarterback,should do it.Don't forget,Jim had to do it under Dika yelling down his back.

Sounds like jealousy from the old 85' "punky qb" to me......LOL

We all questioned Jim's mental state when he played, but he is right that Jay relies on his arm too much..... the QB position is a cerebal one, talent is a must at the position, but you have to make the right decisions at QB, this is what Jay Cutler still has to prove to BEAR fans and NFL football people to become a winner....I'm wishing he proves the critics wrong...

Jim Mac may have candor, but I think he is also a bit jealous. So he gets his info about Cutler from ESPN...not a very good source since they are very anti-Cutler. Maybe Jim should watch Jay play before speaking of things he does not know. Love you Jim but try to be a bit more intelligent when making comments on someone you have not really watched. You may be surprised to know that Jay has the same tenacity that you had for wanting to win games.

I want Rex back but really, Orton would be a better fit for Martz Offense.Orton is smart makes good decisions and is used to playing in 3/4 wide sets.As far as Cutler...he is a Brett Farve he will scramble buy time see the the field than throw (West Coast) offense style

"I haven't seen him play a lot. Just what I see on ESPN," McMahon told the Sun-Times. "Seems to me he relies too much on his cannon, instead of his instincts and reads."

Sounds like Obama on Scott Brown.

"Now I don't know the man's record...but I'll attack it anyway! And, uh, he drives a truck! Can you believe it!? A truck! So, um, yeah don't vote for him."

All McMahon did was give his impression from watching a few highlights. He didn't say he evaluated Cutler and knows what the problem is. Its just a casual comment, not a declaration of fact from a scientific study. It was nothing like Obama's clueless attack on Brown, Officer Crowley, the GOP, Tea Party supporters, southerners, Fox... Do you see a pattern?

McMahon says: "Seems to me he relies too much on his cannon, instead of his instincts and reads." & "When they (ESPN) show replays of his picks, it's like, 'What are you thinking?' "

He got all that "intelligent insight" from watching highlights on ESPN.....need we say more.

Right on Mike. Where were all of you 'life long' fans when this loser
was leading the Bears to one miserable season after
superbowl does not make you a winner when you were part of quite
possibly one of the most under-achieving groups of drunks and coke-heads in the history of the NFL (I left out steroids). They should have won many more Superbowls, but Ditka was a terrible coach. Heck, even the White Sox won a World series, but does anyone care? Noooo, they are still the losers in this town.
I literally stopped watching the Bears, because they were giving me
such an ulcer and hardships. I have not had any problems with today's
Bears. They are full of promise and honest, clean upstanding citizens.
Jay cutler surpassed Jim Mcmayonaise when he was fresh out of the womb. When it is all said and done, Jay Cutler, will make Mctrader (packer garbage), look like the barely functional alcoholic that he is.
This is no different then Troy Aikman refusing to give any Qb's credit for anything when he broadcasts a game. They were both benefactors of great running backs. They both have very little natural talent , and a whole lot of jealousy.

Can't you losers skip bashing Obama in ONE, just ONE sports thread? This is the sports section.

Jim who? That guy who got to play QB with one of the best defenses of all time? All he did was hand off to Walter Payton, throw a couple balls a game to Willie Gault, and let his defense win the games. Anyone who got to play with those guys, would be able to hoist a SB trophy and call themselves a winner. Without them he was just an average QB. Now he is a has been. He was never good enough to criticize anyone. Ironic that a truly great QB like Warner seems to be a lot more positive about Cutler than the has been media attention seeking loser Mac.

Stuckinasheeps crack are you insane, your saying the 80's Bears were a bad football team and these Bears are a much better team. I don't really care what McMahon says but saying he led them to miserable seasons makes no sense. You tell everyone to shut up and cheer for the team and never complain about them but here you are complaining again. You tell everyone that fans are only suppose to shutup and cheer yet you admit that you wuit being a Bears fan in the 80's.

You say Mac is a trader because he played for the Packers, well you live Wisconsin so I guess you are too.

I really wouldn't call 83-88 miserable. But its clear you like loosing so maybe that time was bad for you. Or maybe your mad because you are a Packer fan.

Some people just get too uptight about everything today. He's entitled to his opinion so if you don't like it...too bad. Stop whining and get over it.

I think a better comparison would be Mrs Sara "I can see Russia from my front porch" Palin.. lol.

This is coming from the most over rated QB in the history of the NFL. McMahon was made out of paper, had one good comeback game, and won a super bowl that Steve Fuller could have won. Somebody post the punky QB's stats and see how many picks he threw. Cutlers almost has more TD's now in 3 years than McOverrated had in his whole injury prone career. Let this guy just go away, what career have you all been watching?


To stuckinwisconsin:
WOW dude! Did you ever even watch any Bears games in the 80's. "One miserable season after another"? Are you kidding me. They were one of the best teams of the entire decade! The Bears would have won a few more Superbowls but it was the beginnig of free agency and, truth be told, Mcmahon got hurt and Steve Fuller was terrible. I guess you must have spent a lot of time in the locker room back then and really got to know all of the players personally and that is how you know all about the drugs, alcohol and steroids! I'm being sarcastic. If you stopped watching the Bears like you said then I gues I can forgive your ridiculous comments about how upstanding everyone is now compared to then. I have high hopes for Jay Cutler but let's let him lead the Bears to a winning record before we starting crowning him the next Messiah!


EVERY replay of an interception -- at least those interceptions that aren't tipped or deflected first -- will make you wonder, "What was that quarterback thinking?"

Go away, 85 Bears.

When it comes to Cutler, one thing to remember is that QBs get it all...all the praise, all the blame. I remember at least 3 INTs that were a result of the WR giving up on a quick slant because they couldn't get inside of the DB. Cutler has been blamed for bad body language after INTs, where it looked like he was blaming others for the picks. When the receiver misreads the coverage and runs the wrong route, or goes playground instead of carrying through, that is not all Cutler's fault. If you want to see bad body language, try watching Tom Brady after he gets knocked around, or Eli Manning, who looks like a spoiled child when things go badly. Cutler is no different, but gets hammered. By the way, the Giants are being applauded for letting Eli Manning participate in the hiring of his next QB coach, the same guys who are blasting the Bears for letting Cutler meet with the prospective coaches. Just something to consider...

Cutler does trust his arm too much, but part of that is that he is being asked to do it all. he can't trust his wideouts, he can't trust his line, he can't trust his running game. There are three things Jay trusts: his arm, his legs, and Olsen. Aromashodu did better as the year wore on, and Cutler started looking for him. But when the line played better, and the running game picked up some slack, he threw 8 TDs and 1 INT over the last two weeks. Not going against the Steelers, but the offense, which was inept over the entire season, got the job done with some panache when the front 5 did their job.

Cutler made bad decisions, no question. But think how much he would have been booed or how bad the numbers would have been if he threw the ball away every time there was nothing open. It's not like Indy's offense, where they throw 35-40 times a game, and Manning has to throw it away 4 times. This would be more like 20-40% (depending on the game) of the time Cutler would have to throw it away. Knox, Hester, and Olsen are not able to sell fakes, or get separation on their routes. The only times that it works is the deep ball and the stop route, which incidentally should be a comeback route, but none of our wideouts come back to the ball, which leaves the route open to INTs.

Jimmy Mac faced a lot of 8 man fronts with Payton in the backfield, so McKinnon, Morehead, and Gault were able to play 1 on 1 matchups. McMahon was also able to step up on every play, as he had Thayer, Bortz, and Hilgenberg in the middle of his line, and they may have been the best interior line group in the league. We have the roller skate team in Garza, Kreutz, and Omiyale, who can't hold the line no matter who they play.

I have no problem with Jim havng an opinion, but at the same time, know what you are talking about. Watching ESPN highlights is not the way to evaluate a QB. Jaworski watches hours and hours of tape before making a judgment, and I still think he is wrong. How is McMahon going to be accurate when he watches 30 seconds of highlights a week?

Somebody asked Jimmy Mac a question. He answered it sincerely like always. He also qualified it by saying how much time and thought he had spent on it. (ie. not much).............BFD.

Go back and ask him this question:

Which is easier; teaching a quarterback with a cannon arm to make better decisions; or teaching a quarterback who already makes good decisions to have a cannon arm?

Thank you uh-huh for proving I'm correct about lefties. Right away with the personal attack on me. Who is the loser? Not me!

I think all the citisism of McMahon is totally unjustified. Listen, we have only one SB trophy. We had Walter and a good defense many seasons but it was Jim McMahon that made the difference that took us to the top. Show some respect and appreciation.

Note: I didn't attack any of the bloggers by calling them an idiot or whatever. Just gave my opinion. Do you see how its done now?

As I recall, Jim Mc. had a few problems with relying on arm strength he did not have, but his take on the "What are you thinking?" echoes my own reaction to those picks Cutler gave up. i suspect there is some truth to the concept that Cutler has developed a habit of depending too much on his arm strength to thread needles that most quarterbacks would not try. Still,chances have to be taken at times. He is so close to being an all-time great that this Bear fan hopes he fine tunes to Peyton Manning caliber. At least everyone agrees that the tools are there if he can determine how to consistently use them to their best effect.

Joe Felicelli - you are spot on.

Also, until the media shows some Cutler-love things won't change. They control a lot of the public opinion of those that have no brain of their own to make educated decisions about certain sports figures.


Please stay in Wisconsin and start rooting for Green Bay. You're certainly not a Bear fan if you don't appreciate the 1985 team and the rest of the Ditka teams, which won the division 6 of 11 years and made the playoffs 7 of them. With McMahon, the Bears won the division every year from '84 till he was traded. The only thing wrong with McMahon was that he couldn't stay healthy. He didn't have very good receivers, but that wasn't his fault. He didn't have the strongest arm, but he knew how to play the game, was very accurate, had a great attitude, and the Bears won many games with him that they wouldn't have won without him.

exactly Joe Felicelli you're 100% correct


who did cutler have to throw it to? when your receivers seem to be unable to run simple routes, what are you going to do?

watch the games, a lot of his throws looked off but it was usually because knox, hester, and bennet didn't know where to go.

culter was calling for DA all season and give me that "but he was injuried" crap because it wasn't serious enough to keep him out all season and look what he did when he came in.

I was happy to hear that hester wanted to work more on kick returns and wouldn't mind if his role dimished in the offense. I think the bears spent too much trying to coach hester up at the expense of the of receivers.

maybe it's just me but didn't the bears receivers look utterly raw and uncoached. drake is one guy and i think he spent too much time with hester.

stuckin packerland
why don't you admit it, you're a packers fan.
lets see from 1981 to 1990
the bears had
204 wins and 70 losses
I don't know about you but that's a winning decade.

and the packers
66 wins and 208 losses, 1 winning season

so maybe you should check the facts before you say something stupid.

why didn't they win more, sorry but maybe you don't remember that the NFC of the 80's was stacked. yeah they got beat by the 49ers and redskins, both hall of fame dynasties.

maybe you didn't watch the playoffs because the packers only made it once, so i guess it's ok you're totally ignorant of the power houses of the time, because, to you, every team looked like an all star team, running over the packers

Jim McMahon was a great QB. I would bet to a man on the Bears teams in the 80's all would say he was a very good leader and QB. He was clutch, was a grinder a true O line mentality type of a guy.

Simply fantastic with Payton and the rest of the team.

Stuck you are way out of line calling McMahon lousy!!!

To sum up the 80's Bears under Ditka, there were some problems. Some we could and should have corrected and some, like injuries you can't control.

82: first year, strike, Ditka did a great job of stripping away the crap and setting the foundation for a dominant, championship team.

83: Should have made the playoffs but we had some growing pains.

84: Almost there, with a healthy McMahon we probably go to and win the SB.

85: Nailed it!

86: Should have won the SB. Injuries to McMahon and Leslie Frasier really hurt. Ditka wasn't tough enough on some players and too tough on Tomczak. Couldn't keep the team united when Flutie started playing. The season ended badly.

87: Should have won the SB. More of the same type of problems. Mike Richardson was awful, as in the past and the future.

88: Should have won the SB. Even without Walter, Fencik and others we were right there but blew it again in the playoffs.

89: Crashed and burned.

Lots of wins and one SB championship. Not as good as what we should have accomplished but hardly one bad season after another.

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