NFL Nation: Bill Wade

Posted by's Kevin Seifert

Minnesota never appeared to join the intense bidding last week for quarterback Jay Cutler, who landed with an NFC North rival in Chicago. We left open the possibility that there was some under-the-radar involvement, but coach Brad Childress slammed the door on that idea in this interview with Judd Zulgad of the Star Tribune.

Childress didn't provide a direct reason for the Vikings' lack of interest but noted the challenge of fitting a new quarterback into an established scheme.

Childress: "He's a good player, and obviously I don't question his physical skills. But obviously it will be what he can do in relationship to the team to help the team. ... Are they going to be able to match their offense up to what he can do offensively? I think there's kind of a ferreting-out period."

Childress acknowledged the steep price the Bears were forced to pay -- three high draft choices plus quarterback Kyle Orton -- and added: "You always have to give something to get something. Time will tell whether the give was better or the get was better."

Reasonable people can debate whether, as Childress said, the "get" will be better than the "give." But the Vikings' decision to sit out the trade talks entirely represents one of two things: Either a stunning lack of ambition at the game's most important position, or simply a deep confidence in the combination of current quarterbacks Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels.

Catching up on the weekend from around the NFC North:

Posted by's Kevin Seifert

Just how quarterback-starved have the Chicago Bears been in their history?

That's one of the first questions I had after learning the Bears had acquired quarterback Jay Cutler from Denver on Thursday.

Cutler played in the Pro Bowl earlier this year, a feat only one Bears quarterback has achieved in the past 46 years. That's right, other than Jim McMahon's appearance in the game following the 1985 season, you have to go all the way back to Bill Wade in 1963 to find a Bears quarterback on a Pro Bowl roster. Overall, the Bears have placed four different quarterbacks in the Pro Bowl four times since 1951.

Here's the full list:

1985: Jim McMahon
1963: Bill Wade
1956: Ed Brown
1955: Ed Brown
1952: Johnny Lujack
1951: Johnny Lujack

Since McMahon's final season as the Bears' primary starter in 1988, the Bears have had a revolving door of quarterbacks. All told, 13 different players have finished as the team's leading passer over the ensuing 20 seasons. With the Cutler trade, it's a fairly safe assumption that the ignominious run -- which started with Mike Tomczak and ended with Kyle Orton -- has ended.

I'll keep filling the blog until about 7:30 p.m. ET, when Bears general manager Jerry Angelo will hold a teleconference. I'll jump back on shortly thereafter.