2015 DRAFT GUIDE
QB Cutler welcomes a familiar Bears offense

By GENE CHAMBERLAIN - Associated Press
    2014-06-17 17:09

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) - While quarterback Jay Cutler insists he hasn't changed much since last year, he's glad he can also say the same for the Chicago Bears offense.

Cutler doubts he has actually gotten bigger or stronger with a physical regimen he began earlier than in past years, but when the Bears opened minicamp Tuesday there was no denying the effect of playing in the same offensive system under coach Marc Trestman in successive seasons.

''We're going into my ninth year,'' Cutler said. ''I think this is only the second or third time I've been in an offense multiple years.

''Still a little bit new to us, you know, we did some good thing last year. We're still in the learning process but guys are much more familiar with what the concepts are and the formations and everything. So that's going to be a help: less thinking and able to go fast.''

The Bears improved from 29th ranked to No. 5 in passing and from 28th to No. 8 in total offense in their first year playing in Trestman's attack. Cutler and former backup Josh McCown set a franchise record with a combined 96.9 passer rating. Now the assumption is they're further along in the offense and it can get even more effective, although McCown is now with Tampa Bay and the Bears are auditioning for backups.

''The beauty of continuity in football is learning the system and understanding where the problem lies on each play and each down and distance, and having the answer for that,'' Bears offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer said. ''The more you know about the play, the more you know about the offense, the more problem-solving you can do as opposed to just running the play.''

With wide receivers Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery, tight end Martellus Bennett and running back Matt Forte back behind a veteran line, Cutler sees nothing but big things ahead for the offense.

''He's been in so many different systems, but just to be able to go back to back in the same environment, the same coaching environment, the same players around him, the way we do things and the way we say things, I think can allow him to enjoy more flexibility at the line of scrimmage and understand what we're trying to get to,'' Trestman said about Cutler. ''Each of these plays we have, there's a lot of different answers against a lot of different types of (defensive) looks and coverages, and I think he's at a place now, because he's had so much experience on these plays, he can utilize the entire play to find the right answers.''

Trestman was the one who has said he thought Cutler looked bigger and faster, but Tuesday backed off this comment a bit. Cutler himself called it an exaggeration.

Cutler, who signed a seven-year, $126 million contact at the end of last season, said he began working out earlier this year because he wanted to get stronger on his left side after suffering a groin strain on his left side and a left ankle sprain.

''I got back into it a little bit earlier this year because with the dual injuries I just wanted to get my whole left side back to even with my right side,'' he said. ''So I feel good. I didn't do anything out of the ordinary to get ready for this year.

''It takes some time. I wasn't really feeling good until into March, really, right before we started.''

Cutler missed five games last year, and played an entire Bears season only in 2009, his first year with the club. So his physical condition is a concern.

''I was straight until I really got here for a while and it was a hit parade back there,'' Cutler said, referring to the 148 sacks he absorbed his first four years as a Bear. ''It takes its toll from time to time.''

Cutler was sacked just 19 times last year, but still was injured.

''I think with the offensive line we've got here, the guys are doing everything possible,'' Cutler said. ''Last year was last year. Kind of two freak injuries. I don't really foresee that happening again.''

Cutler has been working at leadership skills, as well. He recently went with Trestman to New York to meet with author and NFL adviser Dov Seidman on how to foster a more ethical culture in the locker room.

It's all a part of and approach toward creating a family atmosphere with the team that Trestman has emphasized.

''I don't think it can hurt,'' Cutler said. ''I mean I think you can ask anybody. If they go to work and they like where they're working, they like who they're working with, the atmosphere that they're in promotes good ideas and promotes any idea no matter if it's good or bad.

''I think anybody's going to enjoy that atmosphere.''

NOTES: Right tackle Jordan Mills missed the first day of minicamp while resting a foot injury he has rehabbed since surgery at the end of last season. Eben Britton and Michael Ola took his place with the first team. ... Safety Craig Steltz is back working out missing earlier off-season workouts following an off-season leg surgery. ... Linebacker Khaseem Greene, rookie defensive tackle Will Sutton and safety Chris Conte missed practice with excused absences for what Trestman called ''family reasons.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Jake BequetteAug 28 08:52a

New England Patriots TE/DE Jake Bequette (undisclosed) was waived/injured Thursday, Aug. 27.

Miles AustinAug 28 08:32a

Philadelphia Eagles WR Miles Austin hasn't stood out, or received many chances to stand out, thus in training camp. His role is undetermined as he could start on the [ More ]

Nelson AgholorAug 27 10:22p

Philadelphia Eagles WR Nelson Agholor should be the 'second-most productive receiver on the team when the season ends,' according to Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Ryan MallettAug 27 07:52p

Updating a previous report, Houston Texans QB Ryan Mallett missed practice Thursday, Aug. 27, because he overslept. Mallett was present for meetings later on, however. He will also be at practice Friday, Aug. 28.

Josh JohnsonAug 27 07:42p

Free-agent QB Josh Johnson (Bengals) signed with the New York Jets Thursday, Aug. 29. QB Jake Heaps was subsequently waived.

R. Griffin IIIAug 27 07:12p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (concussion) has been cleared to play Saturday, Aug. 29, against the Baltimore Ravens.

Earl ThomasAug 27 06:22p

Seattle Seahawks FS Earl Thomas (shoulder) is on track to be ready for the start of the regular season, according to head coach Pete Carroll.

Markus WheatonAug 27 05:42p

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Markus Wheaton could be primed for a breakout season, in the opinion of ESPN.com's Jeremy Fowler.

Letroy GuionAug 27 04:52p

Green Bay Packers DE Letroy Guion will be suspended for the first three games of the regular season after his appeal was apparently denied.

Martavis BryantAug 27 03:02p

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Martavis Bryant has been suspended four games for violating the league's Substance Abuse Policy, according to league sources. He has filed an appeal.

Arian FosterAug 27 02:22p

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (groin) has been working out in Houston, and he's expected to return to the field in some facet by Week 2 to Week 4, [ More ]

Pat DevlinAug 27 10:32a

Free-agent QB Pat Devlin (Dolphins) signed with the Cleveland Browns Thursday, Aug. 27. OL Ryan Seymour was waived.

Connor BarthAug 26 08:53p

Free-agent PK Connor Barth (Broncos) agreed to terms with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Wednesday, Aug. 26, on a two-year deal. Financial terms were not disclosed.

DeVante ParkerAug 26 04:23p

Miami Dolphins rookie WR DeVante Parker (foot) isn't sure if he'll be healthy enough in time for Week 1. He and the Dolphins don't want to have rushed return [ More ]

Brandon McManusAug 26 10:33a

Denver Broncos PK Brandon McManus won the kicking job as PK Connor Barth was released Wednesday, Aug. 26.

Connor BarthAug 26 10:33a

Denver Broncos PK Brandon McManus won the kicking job as PK Connor Barth was released Wednesday, Aug. 26.

Evan RoysterAug 26 10:13a

Atlanta Falcons RB Evan Royster (undisclosed) was waived/injured Wednesday, Aug. 26.

Rex GrossmanAug 26 09:23a

Free-agent QB Rex Grossman (Redskins) was signed by the Atlanta Falcons to a one-year, $1 million deal Wednesday, Aug. 26.

Taylor MaysAug 26 12:43a

The Oakland Raiders signed free-agent SS Taylor Mays (Bengals) Tuesday, Aug. 25.

Orlando ScandrickAug 26 12:43a

Updating a previous report, Dallas Cowboys CB Orlando Scandrick (knee) suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee Tuesday, Aug. 25. An MRI confirmed the injury.

Michael VickAug 25 07:42p

Updating a previous report, free-agent QB Michael Vick (Jets) signed a one-year deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers Tuesday, Aug. 25. Financial terms were not disclosed. QB Bruce Gradkowski (finger) [ More ]

Evan MathisAug 25 06:13p

Free-agent OG Evan Mathis (Eagles) agreed to a one-year deal with the Denver Broncos Tuesday, Aug. 25.

Jameis WinstonAug 25 04:33p

Updating a previous report, Tampa Bay Buccaneers rookie QB Jameis Winston (ankle) suffered a sprained ankle Monday, Aug. 24, against the Cincinnati Bengals. Head coach Lovie Smith still expects [ More ]

Josh JohnsonAug 25 02:53p

Cincinnati Bengals QB Josh Johnson was released Tuesday, Aug. 25.

Victor CruzAug 25 02:42p

Updating a previous report, New York Giants WR Victor Cruz (calf) doesn't know when he'll be able to return to practice as he continues to deal with inflammation in [ More ]

Zach MettenbergerAug 25 01:23p

Tennessee Titans backup QB Zach Mettenberger has performed at a high level in training camp and the preseason, and head coach Ken Whisenhunt laughed off a suggestion that the [ More ]

Bruce GradkowskiAug 25 12:53p

Pittsburgh Steelers backup QB Bruce Gradkowski (finger) suffered a dislocated finger on his left hand during the team's preseason game against the Green Bay Packers last weekend, according to [ More ]

Andre WilliamsAug 25 12:22p

New York Giants RB Andre Williams could overtake RB Rashad Jennings as the lead back sometime this season, maybe even to open the season. Williams has worked on his [ More ]

Mike EvansAug 25 09:13a

Updating a previous report, Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Mike Evans (hamstring) isn't believed to have a serious hamstring injury. 'I talked to him and he didn't feel like it [ More ]

Jameis WinstonAug 24 11:32p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston completed eight of his 13 pass attempts for 90 yards, no touchdowns and no interceptions in the preseason game Monday, Aug. 24, against [ More ]

Doug MartinAug 24 11:32p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Doug Martin rushed six times for 59 yards in the preseason game Monday, Aug. 24, against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Mike EvansAug 24 09:12p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Mike Evans (hamstring) left the preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals Monday, Aug. 24, due to a strained hamstring.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group