Mike Sando's analysis of upcoming quarterback contracts offers a thoughtful discussion of, among other topics, the financial future of Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler.
The Bears seem set to let Cutler play out the final year of his contract, after which they would have the opportunity to use their franchise tag on him and/or negotiate a long-term contract. I've suggested that Cutler would have to fall on his face this season for the Bears to move on from him, but the relative unpredictability of general manager Phil Emery is an important caveat.
So I thought it was interesting that an NFL contract negotiator told Sando that Cutler will get top dollar ($20 million annually) from someone if he signs a multi-year deal in the next year or two. (The estimated $16 million franchise figure is an option for 2013.)
You'll need an Insider subscription to read the entire post, but here is a portion of what the negotiator said: "Jay Cutler is going to eventually get $20 million no matter how much he deserves it. I think there will be a team desperate for a quarterback who doesn't like the quarterbacks in the draft. Maybe they think they're close and the GM says Jay Cutler is no different from Joe Flacco, that you can win a championship with him. It just takes one of 32 teams to make that judgment, and I think there's a good chance someone will."
Part of that sentiment goes back to the old cliché: One man's trash is another's treasure. Given the desperate state of quarterbacking in the NFL, I find it reasonable to think that a team would jump to sign Cutler even if the Bears decide to move on -- assuming Cutler avoids a career-killing 30-interception season in 2013. Your thoughts?