Brandon Marshall wasn’t bashful about proclaiming his belief that quarterback Jay Cutler will win the NFL MVP award. Is he crazy, or is there a chance?
He will need to do two things he hasn’t done in years
Winning the MVP as a quarterback in the modern NFL is very difficult, but also quite simple. To do it Jay Cutler will need to have a career year in every sense of the phrase. Making the playoffs without question is a priority. The interception total will have to be down from where it typically is with him and he will have to show progress as a leader on the field AND on the sideline. However, there are two important facets in particular that must be met in order for Cutler to even be in the conversation.
The tricky part is they are things he hasn’t done in years. The first is past for over 4,500 yards. Jay has not accomplished that feat since 2008 as a member of the Denver Broncos. It was also the year he went to his only Pro Bowl. Secondly, and most important for the Chicago Bears is that he play all 16 games of the season. For all his talent, Cutler has endured a lot of hits since coming to the Windy City. Last year was no exception as he missed five games with groin and ankle ailments. The last time he managed to make it through a full season was back in 2009, his first with the Bears.
Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees make up NFC obstacles alone
The problem may not be the stats in 2014. Jay Cutler sits at the head of arguably the most talented offense of his entire career with weapons such as Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffery and Martellus Bennett. He has a proven coaching staff headlined by a quarterback specialist in Marc Trestman and an offensive line to protect him. The problem is the competition. There are more proven quarterbacks around the league who have won the award before and are still playing well enough to do it again.
Just the NFC alone has a number of contender. Longtime rival Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay won the honor back in 2011 and he’s a year younger than Cutler. New Orleans Saints superstar Drew Brees has passed for 5,000 yards in four seasons. There is also running back Adrian Peterson who claimed the award in 2012 and do-it-all weapon for Philadelphia in LeSean McCoy. These names alone will be considered better bets to win MVP.
Can Jay Cutler win the honor? Of course he can. The talent is there and so is the supporting cast. The question has always been will the consistency and the leadership ever be? As the 2014 season approaches, fans are getting ready to find out.