THE BLOG
11/10/2014 02:59 pm ET Updated Jan 10, 2015

Jay Cutler, An $18 Million Mistake

It's hard to watch your beloved football team play a primetime game against a long-standing rival when you know deep down in your heart before the first snap that they are probably going to lose. It's beyond demoralizing to be trailing 42-0 at halftime. In a way, it's like your team didn't even show up. And yet, they still get paid.

A lot has been written about Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, but the bottom line is he is making a lot of money off of his mediocre performance. Everyone is eager to debate his toughness, his leadership (or lack thereof), his facial expressions, and his passing skills. But one thing that's not up for debate is his salary. Jay Cutler, not including his signing bonus, will take home roughly $18 million this year.

People always talk about Cutler's too-cool-for-school demeanor. He's often nonchalant in interviews, he's chill on the sidelines, and he seems unruffled by criticism. But the thing is, maybe he doesn't care. And why should he? Regardless of his performance, he gets paid more than many of the NFL's current elite quarterbacks, including Eli Manning and Tom Brady.

Last week Tom Brady did cartwheels around Jay Cutler on the field, throwing over 350 yards and earning his team over 50 points. Cutler played his typical mediocre game, putting up a little over 200 yards. Brady got the win. But Cutler still walked away with a bigger paycheck than Brady.

On paper, Cutler looks okay. He's not a terrible quarterback. He's got a great arm, and he can throw the ball. The problem is, he doesn't win games. Not only that, but he continues to make embarrassing errors, such as fumbles, interceptions, and numerous delay of game penalties. An $18 million quarterback should not be getting a delay of game penalty in every game. That is like a CEO showing up five minutes late to every major board meeting, or a magazine editor having a typo on every page. It takes nothing more than a small amount of conscientiousness to fix.

Those in support of Cutler are quick to point out that the 2014 Bears defense has been pretty terrible. Yes, it has. We've had some bad injuries. But we also didn't have a lot of money for defensive players because we spent so much on Cutler's contract. We hired coach Marc Trestman for his genius offensive mind in order to groom our prized QB. We picked up receivers Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffrey so that Cutler would have targets for his bullets. We pretty much set Cutler up to win, except he's not. The Bears have bet it all on Cutler as a franchise quarterback, and so far Cutler is the only one winning; and it's not games, it's cash.