The Bears season could be going from bad to worse. Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reports that quarterback Jay Cutler suffered a shoulder injury during Sunday’s loss to the Giants and could miss the rest of the season.
Chicago’s brass spent today learning more about Cutler’s second significant injury this season, following the thumb malady that sidelined him earlier, but multiple sources informed Biggs he sustained an injury that could put his season at risk. This would leave the Bears with Matt Barkley at quarterback as they play out the string on what has been one of the franchise’s more disappointing seasons.
The Bears will learn Tuesday whether or not Cutler’s injury is season-ending, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The Giants sacked Cutler four times, with Olivier Vernon slamming the 11th-year passer to the turf on the second play from scrimmage and drawing a personal foul penalty. He finished the game but committed a game-sealing turnover when he threw a pass well short of its target and into Landon Collins‘ arms.
This would be the 33-year-old Cutler’s shortest season since his rookie year if it wraps up after five games, which is how many he started when he was promoted to be the Broncos’ starter late in the 2006 slate. But this setback will also further speculation Cutler is done in the Windy City.
The eighth-year Bears signal-caller’s seven-year, $126.7MM contract runs through the 2020 season but doesn’t contain much guaranteed money after this year. Cutler’s deal would cost the Bears just $2MM in dead money if they were to move on from the polarizing passer prior to the start of the next league year. If Chicago were to keep Cutler on for his age-34 season, it would come with a cap number of $16MM. That’s down $1MM from the $17MM he’s making this season, but the franchise could well decide to move on from a quarterback that hasn’t quite delivered on expectations since that seminal 2009 trade from the Broncos.
Cutler’s lone Pro Bowl came in 2008 during his final season in Denver, and although he led Chicago to the 2010 NFC championship game, the Bears haven’t made the playoffs since. This season, he’s thrown four touchdown passes and five interceptions, completing just 59 percent of his passes.
Sam Robinson contributed to this report
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