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Posted at 7:25 PM ET, 01/23/2011

Jay Cutler's toughness is not an issue with Brian Urlacher

By Cindy Boren

Within moments after Jay Cutler came out of the Chicago Bears' NFC championship game against the Green Bay Packers because of a knee injury, the social-media second-guessing was seriously underway.

And @jaycutlersheart was up and running on Twitter. (Bio: I hurt my knee. No, seriously, I was really hurt. I couldn't go.)

Cutler, who said he will undergo an MRI on the knee he hurt in the first half, said he had "no comment on that" when asked about those who questioned his toughness and added that it wasn't his decision to come out of the game. His coach, Lovie Smith, said the decision came from the team's medical staff. "There was no decision at all," Smith said. "He was injured. He was hurt and he couldn't go. The trainers and doctors ... made that decision."

His teammate, Brian Urlacher, was angrily outspoken in his defense of Cutler. "Jay was hurt," Urlacher said. "I don't question his toughness. He's tough as hell. He's one of the toughest guys on our football team. He doesn't [gripe]. He doesn't complain when he gets hit. He goes out there and plays his [butt] off every Sunday. He practices every single day. So, no, we don't question his toughness."

Among the Twitter criticisms from NFL players:

All I'm saying is that he can finish the game on a hurt knee... I played the whole season on one...less than a minute ago via ÜberTwitter

If I'm on chicago team jay cutler has to wait till me and the team shower get dressed and leave before he comes in the locker room! #FACTless than a minute ago via ÜberTwitter

If my knee was hurt or acl/mcl/pcl sprain, I would not be standing up on the sideline. #jaycutlerless than a minute ago via ÜberTwitter

Knee-gate in Chicagoless than a minute ago via Plume

Urlacher's response to tweets from players?

"Nothing like jealous people who are sitting home watching," Urlacher said. "Players around the league you said, right? Yeah, love jealous people when they're watching our game on TV while their season is over."

By Cindy Boren  | January 23, 2011; 7:25 PM ET
Categories:  NFL  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Quotebook: Aaron Rodgers says he's okay as Packers head for Super Bowl
Next: Mark Sanchez picks Mark Brunell out on the sideline


Pretty simple to me when Brian Urlacher stands up for your toughness nothing else needs to be said,case closed.

Posted by: mfowler1 | January 23, 2011 8:20 PM | Report abuse

As far as I'm concerned, Cutler is pretty tough. Go back to the beginning of the season and Chicago seemed to have no O-Line and Cutler was getting sacked and thrown around for a good few weeks before the Bears got their offense figured out. As a Packer fan,I felt badly for him having to go back up to the line after getting swamped time after time.

Posted by: missingwisc | January 23, 2011 9:06 PM | Report abuse

I'm hoping Urlacher knows toughness better than Shantheman knows physical conditioning...

Posted by: 21stCenturyCaveman | January 23, 2011 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Urlacher's that team's leader. He's old school and on his way to the Hall of Fame. He'll back up every one of his teammates no matter what. He did the same for Rex Grossman.

Posted by: randysbailin | January 24, 2011 8:09 AM | Report abuse

You didn't watch Bears games this year if you are questioning Cutler's toughness this morning. Not one Bear got hit as hard as him for the season. Yet he kept going out. Cutler's problem is his toughness pays the price for his attitude which can always be questioned and he, quite understandably, doesn't care(!).

Posted by: tslats | January 24, 2011 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Okay, here's where I show I'm an old guy. Back in the 1950s, Ray Nitschke of the Packers fractured John Unitas's nose. It was bleeding so badly he was swallowing blood and couldn't be understood. He kept telling running back Lenny Moore to do something and Moore couldn't make it out. Finally, the words, very muffled got through: "Shove some mud up my nose." Which Moore did and Unitas stayed in the game.

The thing is, if Cutler had a sprained knee, he would have had two weeks between the Super Bowl to get well but if he doesn't play, the Bears are out of it. Poor Todd Collins looked terrified in there which is why they went to Caleb Hanie who almost tied the game for the Bears.

The fact is, Cutler played a very poor game before the injury, which is what gives rise to the questioning--that and the fact that he stayed on the sidelines for the entire game, even after he couldn't possibly go back in once whey called on Hanie. (By rule, once the emergency QB came in, neither Cutler nor Collins could play again.)

Posted by: jhpurdy | January 24, 2011 9:33 AM | Report abuse

The votes are in... Cutler pulled a Palin.

Posted by: whocares666 | January 24, 2011 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Cutler stunk before the injury. Great time to bench him.They need to improve their O-Line.

Posted by: jercha | January 24, 2011 10:45 AM | Report abuse

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