December 14, 2009

Are You Ready for Some Football?

Scrivener links to some contrarian thoughts from Dave Berri's "The Wages of Wins." Berri suggests that the team makes the quarterback, not as supposed, the other way 'round.

The Chicago Bears finished the 2008 season with a 9-7 record, a mark that fell just short of qualifying for the playoffs. In discussing Chicago’s problems, people tended to focus on the team’s quarterback. As Table One reports, Kyle Orton – the Bears starting quarterback in 2008 — was ranked 25th (out of 32) quarterbacks...

In the offseason it became clear that Jay Cutler -– a player who ranked 7th ... was available. So the Bears sent Kyle Orton –-- plus two first round draft picks and a third round pick –- to the Broncos for Cutler.

Fans of the Bears rejoiced at this move. And fans of the Denver Broncos became very, very angry ... Many NFL pundits were heard expressing the conventional wisdom: You simply don’t trade away a “franchise” quarterback [like Cutler]..

[Today] the Broncos are 7-4 while the Bears are 4-7. When we look at each quarterback’s stats we see that the 2008 result has been essentially reversed. Orton now ranks 9th ... Cutler is ranked 25th.

This was posted prior to the Broncos-Colts game. One might respond with the clever, well reasoned three word argument: "Umm, Peyton Manning?"

I have been thinking that the Chicago trade is on par with Cutler's tragic flaw: he lacks the emotional maturity to match his arm. Of course, he will probably grow out of it (into it?), but it is not a guarantee. Forcing a trade to a team with inferior receivers does not strike me as a rational, self-interested move for a QB.

No doubt they have a better club scene, and he can look forward to palling around with Oprah Winfrey. But a guy in his profession should start rolling up stats and wins and establishing a foundation for championships. I can't help but feel he traded those away or deferred them for childish reasons.

Closing, non-sequitor aside: I was pretty happy with the Broncos yesterday. No great shame to lose to the 2009 Colts. They did not get blown out. And if you take away a few educable errors (15 yd helmet-doff penalty), and make a couple field goals, it was a game.

Posted by John Kranz at December 14, 2009 3:00 PM

JaMarcus Russell makes Cutler look positively professional. Cutler better hope Al Davis isn't shopping for a new quarterback after yesterday's game.

Posted by: Keith at December 14, 2009 6:33 PM | What do you think? [1]