Friday, March 13, 2009
Jay Cutler or Kurt Warner?
In my opinion, there are a lot of Kurt Warner's in the league but Kurt has what many consider to be a hall of fame resume'. He's never had the best arm, or even a great turnover ratio for that matter. However he has proven time and time again that he is a very clutch player who gives you every chance to win in the 4th, no matter how many times he turned it over in the first 3 quarters. You can say what you want about the teams he inherited, but many average to above average quarterbacks have inherited great teams and only Kurt Warner has the kind of resume' he has. He along with our own Craig Morton are the only two players to lead two teams to the championship game in NFL history.
Jay Cutler has what many believe to be is the best arm in the NFL right now. At only 25, he doesn't have a great career resume yet (17-20) and hasn't even led his team to a playoff game which the player he replaced (Jake Plummer) did a season before he was drafted. Jay's upsides are obvious in his youth and his physical tools. It's been well documented how well of an athlete Cutler is, including his eye popping combine numbers in 2006. Jay's turnover ratio is average at best (25-18 in 2008) however it is his career winning percentage that is the big question mark for me. 11-35 in college, 17-20 in the Pros. Yes Vanderbilt was overmatched in the SEC, but they have a much better record in the 3 years without (16-25) Jay than with him (9-25). There is something to be said about this. Is he a career loser?
The Hard Part
In comparing these two quarterbacks, the intangibles are the thing that jumps off the page at me. Kurt and Jay both turn it over more than you would like, and both have posted average seasons as NFL starters.
However when you compare their situations you see that both have played with stellar offenses, but only Kurt has been able to turn it into positive winning seasons with routine Superbowl, not just playoff appearances. Yes, Jay has time to accomplish these things but will he?
To me the difference between these quarterbacks relies in attitude. Kurt Warner is a generally positive person mostly due to his faith. Jay Cutler has shown in the last few weeks that he is a man of great (maybe too much) pride and when you throw in the way he interacts with the media (mostly negatively) you cannot paint the same positive picture for Jay Cutler the MAN as you can Kurt Warner the MAN.
In the end of this lengthy analysis it is apparent that Jay Cutler is as talented if not more physically talented than Kurt Warner. But I have great concern over Jay's attitude, especially at the quarterback position. A guy like Kurt Warner has taken great offenses with marginal defenses to Superbowls, Jay Cutler can't even get his guys into the playoffs. He may have the best arm under 30 in football, but if he can't get his guys to win is he really worth it?
Who would you rather have right now?