Thursday, October 22, 2009

Factoring In: 10/22/2009

- So the Bears signed franchise QB Jay Cutler to a huge contract extension that means he will be with the team through the 2013 season. Not a bad move considering its been since... well since Sid Luckman in the 1940's that the Bears have had a franchise QB. But is Jay Cutler a franchise QB? Don't get me wrong, he's good. He has a rocket arm and pretty good accuracy, but is he good enough to deserve this much. Have the Bears seen enough of Cutler to know he's their guy? I've always said that Chicago is where NFL quarterbacks go to die. The only thing worse than having a lousy quarterback is having one that is sucking up a lot of salary cap space and not making an impact as big as his contract. In Week One, Cutler was picked off 4 times. The 4th one coming in the final minute of the game with Green Bay sitting back in prevent defense and the game on the line. A few weeks later he barely passed for over 100 yards at home against the Lions. Just this past week, Cutler was in a similar situation to Week One where he was facing a prevent defense in Atlanta and needed to score a TD in the final minute. Once again, he failed. To me a franchise QB drives down the field in that situation and scores. I don't want to hear, "He doesn't have the receivers". A franchise QB finds a way to get it done with or without great receivers. The Bears are a 3-2 (a 2-3 team if Jeff Reed doesn't miss two FGs) football team right now and I can honestly say I don't think things would be much different if they had kept Kyle Orton instead. Jay Cutler is a good quarterback, no doubt, but is he a franchise quarterback? Well the jury is still out on that one.

- Every year the San Jose Sharks look great in the regular season, get into the playoffs, expect to go far and choke. Joe Thornton is one of the best playmakers in the game and his numbers have steadily dropped since overpaid flash in the pans like Jonathan Cheechoo and Milan Michalek were placed on his line. Wisely, the Sharks get rid of the excess baggage trade them to Ottawa and get disgruntled superstar Dany Heatley in return. Thornton and Heatley make up one of the most dangerous combos in the league today. However, this is the response I read from Sharks fans: "When Heatley scores, I'll cheer but for the team and not that SOB", "Why did we get this cry baby?", "Heatley is a cancer!". Dany Heatley is a two time 50 goal scorer that led the Ottawa Senators, a team like the Sharks that used to choke in the playoffs every year, to the Stanley Cup Finals. His shot, playmaking ability and hockey smarts makes him one of the most dangerous and underrated players in the game today. Shark fans, you should be thanking the hockey gods every day since the Heatley trade. You have two phenomenal hockey players, in their prime, playing side by side on the same line and you're whining about his past and how he left Ottawa, etc. Who cares? You'll have a lot of excitement, win a ton of games and eventually break through and lead your team to the Finals.

- A couple weeks ago the New York Yankees won a critical Game 2 against the Minnesota Twins in the AL wildcard round. In the top of the 11th inning, Joe Mauer sliced a hit down the left field line, it landed in fair territory, but the umpire made a mistake and called it foul. Had it been called correctly, the Twins would've had at least a two run lead, maybe more. Instead the Yankees got out of the inning and went on to win the game in the bottom of the 11th. A few days ago the umpires made another bad call that favored the Yankees. Neither Jorge Posada nor Robinson Cano were standing on the third base, Angels catcher Mike Napoli tagged both of them, however, for whatever reason, only Posada was called out. In this particular instance, the outcome of the game was not affected as the Yankees won 10-1, but the media is going crazy saying its the "worst call ever in all of sports". First off, the worst call in all of professional sports is the "New England Snow Job" back in Jan 2002 when Tom Brady fumbled and the referees said it was an incomplete pass. That bad call not only cost the Raiders the game, but the Patriots went on to win their first Super Bowl in the creation of their "dynasty". But I digress... All of you people that are up in arms about umpires helping the Yankees, get a life. Nobody cares about the Twins. Take a look around, you don't see people wearing Twins hats all over the country. You don't see people talking about the Twins as being one of the most storied franchises in all of sports. If the Twins managed to knock out the Yankees in the first round, it would have been a tragedy for baseball. The Yankees have the history, the superstars, the stories, and the interest of most the country. Whether its to cheer for them or against them, people watch when the Yankees are involved. If the Twins made it to the ALCS you would've heard this loud unified clicking sound. It would've been the sound of America changing the channel and no longer caring about baseball. As for the Angels, one bad call doesn't put the Yankees up 3 games to 1 on the Angels. So quit whining about a call that had no effect on the series, get that rally monkey off his ass and start praying for a big comeback.

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