Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Cutler identifies his best throw of Week 1
By Michael C. Wright
Jay Cutler called his best throw of Chicago’s 24-21 win over the Cincinnati Bengals the 38-yard completion down the right sideline he fired to Brandon Marshall with 11:22 left to play during what turned out to be the game-winning drive.
Out of the shotgun formation, Cutler dropped the pass between the cornerback and the safety to Marshall for the completion.
“The best throw I made, probably the one to [Marshall] down the sideline late in the game,” Cutler said Monday during the “Jay Cutler Show” on ESPN 1000. “We finally caught man [coverage]. We had been dialing up man plays, and hadn’t caught man; finally got it. It’s just gratifying whenever you can hit one.”
The play came just after a 6-yard completion to Marshall. Three snaps later, Cutler scrambled for 18 yards, before finally capping the drive with a 19-yard touchdown pass to Marshall, who was locked up in a one-on-one situation with Cincinnati safety Reggie Nelson.
Marshall finished the game with eight catches for 104 yards and was targeted a team-high 10 times. Cutler threw Alshon Jeffery’s direction eight times and to Matt Forte and Martellus Bennett six times apiece.
While there’s the perception that Cutler tends to lock on to Marshall, the quarterback said the game plan always is to spread the ball around to all of the team’s weapons.
“There’s gonna be games where we’re gonna have to ride [Marshall], where we’re gonna have to [ride] Matt. There’s gonna be games where Alshon is gonna have to step up and Martellus,” Cutler said. “Ideally to keep the defense guessing, you want to [spread] the ball to these different guys. That’s kind of the game plan that we’re going with; with different formations, putting guys in different spots, and being able to get the ball around to different areas of the field. I don’t think going into the game we thought Brandon was gonna get 10 catches [Marshall had eight]. He did. Sometimes it works out like that.”