Is Jay a true professional who can see the reasons behind personnel moves, or is he an upstart whose confidence, while well-founded, is becoming arrogance and rebellion?
I have seen and written comments relating to this topic, but it's starting to concern me, and there seems to be enough MSM buzz about it that I want to see what the MHR faithful have to say. Let's begin by looking at facts and continue with some rampant speculation in the media. Hopefully this will be just the recipe for riling up all the Broncomaniacs enough that they opine.
JUST THE FACTS, MA'AM
According to the Denver Post, "Cutler left Denver for vacation just hours after the team returned from San Diego on Dec. 29 and has not been back in town or spoken publicly since McDaniels was hired."
After Mike Shanahan was fired, Cutler was quoted in Rocky Mountain News as saying he is, "disappointed... shocked... not happy about it... not pleased with it at all."
Also according to the DP, in an article referenced in the 1/15 edition of Horse Tracks, McDaniels said he had spoken to Cutler and that the two had "... a very, very lively conversation" regarding the new direction McDaniels is taking the offense he'd like Jay to lead.
McDaniels is confident he can help Cutler by relating to him and having an impact on him on a daily basis.
The Talking Heads Say...
Some speculate that McDaniels WILL have an impact. "Perhaps McDaniels was chosen because the team's brass believes he can help Cutler improve."
On the surface, this looks great. Talented-beyond-his-years QB plus offensive wunderkind HC has to be the greatest offense of all time, according to some drooling stat hounds.
Folks, I don’t think you realize what this means. McDaniels is the man who called the plays for Tom Brady and Randy Moss’ record breaking season two years ago. He’s the man who turned the Patriots into a shutgun running, spread offense executing, multiple 100 reception wide receiver a year having, fantasy owner’s dream team. And last season, he did it with a quarterback who hadn’t started a game since high school.
McDaniels, an offensive whiz kid, takes over a team that already has three prime weapons - a 25 year old QB who threw for more than 4,500 yards and 25 TDs - a 24 year old 6′4″ WR who has averaged 103 catches, 1,300 yards and 6.5 TDs over the last two seasons, and a 22 year old 5′10″ speedster slot weapon who hauled in 91 passes for 980 yards and five scores as a rookie in 2008.
Fantasy owners, Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall and Eddie Royal equal the new Tom Brady, Randy Moss and Wes Welker.
Mark my words, this is an easy call. The Broncos will have the number one passing attack in 2009 under McDaniels, and this coaching move drastically increases the already exciting fantasy potential of the Broncos’ big three.
Wow! That guy was really excited about the 2009 Broncos. But I am afraid he is missing some key emotional items that are not present on Fantasy paper.
I think Jay Cutler is a MAGNIFICENT quarterback. I think he is generally cool under pressure and he is not afraid to have the ball when the game is on the line. But he thinks he's more mature than he really is, as evidenced by yelling at Eddie Royal for dropping a pass against SD, and as evidenced by letting Philip Rivers get to him. He wants to be a leader, and he has that capability for the most part.
But something seems wrong in Broncotown when Jay bolts (no pun intended) from Denver faster than Al Davis at a Grim Reaper convention and has no public comments for weeks. Where is the leadership? It may be obvious in what he's NOT saying. He wanted Bates to stay. It looks now like Bates is gone. Cutler is currently a no-show for the leadership role, at least publicly. I hope to high heaven that he is sending those motivational texts he's famous for to the other players, and that we the fans are the only ones in the dark as to how Jay is dealing with this.
The fact remains that Shanahan, the man who placed all his faith in Cutler as the "best chance to win" is gone, and now Jay's world is coming down because Bates is likely gone. Jay has no thread of continuity. His maturity level will show in how he presents himself from here on out. Will he embrace change, trust Pat Bowlen, and make the best of a situation that has every reason to improve? Or will his disappointment and lack of a comfort zone send him into a childlike tantrum that will end in his eventual removal from Denver?
"The chosen one the boy may be. But great danger I fear in his training."
The Mile High Jedi, McDaniels must be careful how he trains the Force savvy Cutler. With the true master, Shanahan, gone, he must make sure arrogance and rebellion do not fill the young QB's heart. Otherwise, we will not end up with the one who will bring balance to the Broncos. We will incur the wrath of Darth Jayder.
The fact that McDaniels said that he and Cutler had a "very, very lively conversation" means that Jay was extremely opinionated. To me, it signals discontent that McDaniels had to cover with this PR speak. I hope I'm wrong. Cutler's candid demeanor is something that a lot of people love, but for the sake of the TEAM, I hope he comes out with a statement in front of the press (not a written, pre-fab, or PR spin doctored cop out opinion) so we can see body language and see if he is really behind McDaniels or if he is going to be a thorn in the side of the organization over this whole "new direction" thing.
Jay Cutler needs to come out of hiding and be the face of this franchise, whether on vacation or not. When sweeping changes such as those occurring now in his organization occur, the Pro-Bowl Quarterback should be commenting. He should be behind Pat's decision. He should be excited about what McDaniels will do, and be energized for next season, when he can actually start to get some defensive help and some playcalling help so he won't be forced into ... well... forcing the ball into the end-zone into triple coverage. I know he's tired of losing games he should win. So he should back his new boss and he should be DYING to get to work with the guy.
In the words of Dennis Miller, "of course, that's just my opinion. I could be wrong."