Good Morning, Broncos fans! Things were supposed to be different for the Bears and Jay Cutler.
He had his BFFs Brandon Marshall and Jeremy Bates back, an OC in Mike Tice who was willing to protect him with more than five blockers, and he had become a father. Jay was all grown up, and the Cutler/Marshall/Bates trio would finally get to recreate the offensive magic they supposedly crafted in 2008 when they were 16th in the league in scoring.
Waxing the NFL's worst team of 2011 in their opener on Sunday (they beat the Colts 41-21) had Jay and Brandon confident enough to talk trash about a Packers team that had beaten Chicago four straight times and physically punished the ex-Broncos passer.
"Good luck," said Jay, regarding the possibility of Green Bay's corners pressing Marshall, who spoke about his own physical stature like the Packers were unfamiliar with receivers like him.
Hey, Brandon - ever heard of Calvin Johnson?
If you didn't see the game, you know where this is going.
As much as things have changed for Cutler and the Bears, they remain precisely the same.
With little or no help from his offensive teammates, Cutler came up with 74 net passing yards, took seven sacks, and threw four interceptions in a 23-10 loss at Green Bay that left both teams 1-1.
Jay was Jay - yelling at his linemen, allowing his footwork, mechanics, and decision-making to melt under the heat of the Packers' pass rush, and literally kicking Charles Woodson for good measure. After the game, Jay was the same guy who sulked his way out of Denver four seasons ago, offering this gem up when asked about the on-field finger-pointing:
I care about this. This isn't a hobby for me. I'm not doing this for my health. I'm trying to win football games and trying to get first downs. When we're not doing the little things the right way, I'm going to say something. If they want a quarterback who doesn't care, they can get somebody else.
For Marshall's part, he was shut down all night by Green Bay's two-man coverage, dropped an easy touchdown pass while the game was still within reach, and got ripped by NFLN analyst Mike Mayock for his lack of awareness with Cutler facing pressure.
Charles Woodson summed things up later on, when he said of Chicago's QB, "It's the same old Jay. We just need to be in position. Jay will throw us the ball."
Still want him back, Denver fans?
Demaryius Thomas and Manny Ramirez joined Chris Harris and Chris Kuper on the team's injury report, but both were full participants in practice yesterday, while the latter two sat out. Harris is out of his protective walking boot and thinks he'll be able to suit up on Monday.
While it's nice Joe Mays remains self-critical when discussing his missed tackles, talk is cheap.
PFF's stats show that PMFM is an accurate passer, and that Von Miller is a devastating pass rusher. Nothing new there. But also, Wesley Woodyard killed it in the run game.
These people who don't want injured players like Ty Warren to get paid...do they consider for a second whether they think they themselves would deserve to be compensated for getting hurt while performing their own jobs?
You know what else is really stupid? Talking about how great Peyton is at playing indoors, when every home game he ever played before last week was in a dome. The next QB who fares better on the road than at home will be the first one in history.
Matt Ryan says he's learned a lot from studying tape of Manning operating sans huddle.
As expected, Christopher Owens will be Atlanta's new nickel corner.
Here are some quotes from the Falcons coaching staff when asked about the Broncos.
The play of the night was undoubtedly Green Bay's fake FG which went for a 26-yard touchdown shovel pass from punter/holder Tim Masthay to backup TE Tom Crabtree.
Oakland may lose WR Jacoby Ford for the season; San Diego got an extension to try to avoid a blackout; Saints LB Jonathan Vilma will meet with the Ginger Hammer on Monday; Giants CB Terrell Thomas had surgery on his right ACL for the third time; the Rams re-signed QB Kellen Clemens; Dallas extended DE Sean Lissemore.
Not sure what took so long, but the NFLPA has warned players not to use Adderall or Ritalin without first getting medical and league approval.
On Wednesday, we noted that only one illegal contact penalty was called in Week 1 action by the replacement refs; Aaron Rodgers has noticed the same thing. Old friend Nate Jackson explains how he'd go about taking advantage of the presence of replacement referees.
Andy Benoit hits up the All-22 film to break down Ravens/Eagles, and shares his thoughts on a few more Week 2 matchups. Doug Farrar uses the coaches film to explore the diversity of the Cowboys' offensive formations.
Chase Stuart thinks teams down by 15 points should go for two the first time they score a touchdown, instead of on the second one.
No surprise here, but Pat Kirwan says Brandon Lloyd is becoming a huge weapon for New England's offense.
Jason Whitlock sees more physical harm to players coming from being forced to play Thursday night games on short weeks, than from any alleged bounties.
Since Lolo Jones couldn't land a date with Teebs, she has apparently turned her virgin eyes to Ndamukong Suh.