- Michael C. Wright, ESPN Staff Writer
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Former Chicago Bears general manager Jerry Angelo gave up two first-round draft picks, quarterback Kyle Orton and a third-round selection in a 2009 trade with Denver to acquire Jay Cutler, but apparently the former personnel boss is no longer enamored with the signal-caller.
Evaluating all the quarterbacks from last season for thesidelineview.com, Angelo ranked Cutler No. 15 out of the league's 32 starters. Angelo said that Cutler, who last month signed a seven-year, $126 million contract, lacked poise and struggled to read defenses.
Of Cutler, Angelo wrote: "Has all the physical tools, but inconsistent in the clutch. Mostly due to a lack of poise. He's not comfortable reading defenses and consequently locks onto a favorite or predetermined target that may or may not be the right choice. The less he's asked to see, the better he is. A better half-field general than a full-field one."
Interestingly, some of those same issues were brought up in 2011, just before an Oct. 10 loss at Detroit. But Angelo attributed it then to Cutler's "seeing ghosts" and being "shell-shocked" due to shoddy pass protection. Going into that game, Cutler had been sacked 15 times in his previous four outings. In fact, in the 24-13 loss to Detroit, Cutler suffered three sacks, yet he managed to complete 73.7 percent of his passes.
In Angelo's critique of quarterbacks of 2013, Denver's Peyton Manning, New England's Tom Brady, Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers, Carolina's Cam Newton and New Orleans' Drew Brees received the highest grades. Cutler received a grade of 7.9 from Angelo, while Manning earned a 9.0. Other signal-callers receiving similar rankings to Cutler included Matt Ryan, Matthew Stafford and Tony Romo.
Josh McCown, Cutler's backup, received a grade of 6.4 from Angelo.
In evaluating McCown, Angelo said he "had the best year of any backup at his position. He played consistently without having his coaches compromising the playbook to get it done. He was well-schooled and efficient moving the team."
Angelo became Chicago's general manager in 2001. He was fired after the 2012 season and replaced by Phil Emery.
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