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NFL: Bear quarterback Jay Cutler says he was wrong to shove teammate during game

Published September 18, 2012 10:33 pm

NFL notes • Bears QB takes heat for shoving teammate during Packers' loss.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Chicago • Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler acknowledged Tuesday that he was wrong to shove teammate J'Marcus Webb on the sideline during the loss at Green Bay last week.

He has no second thoughts about yelling at him, however.

"I probably shouldn't have bumped him, I'll go with that," Cutler told WMVP-AM in Chicago. "As far as me yelling at him and trying to get him going in the game, I don't regret that. I shouldn't have bumped him, I'll stick to that."

Cutler drew widespread attention for berating and bumping Webb, the starting left tackle, on the sideline and for making some pointed postgame comments after the 23-10 loss to the Packers on Thursday. National analysts such as Terry Bradshaw and Bill Cowher spoke out, and so did Bears defensive back D.J. Moore this week, saying the quarterback was wrong to go after Webb like that.

Cutler looked great in a season-opening blowout over Indianapolis, finding new receiver Brandon Marshall often, but it was a different story last week. He threw four interceptions and got sacked seven times, an all-too-familiar sight for a quarterback who took a beating the previous two years under former offensive coordinator Mike Martz. His tirade against Webb and lack of remorse he showed in the postgame interview brought back questions about his leadership and demeanor.

As for why the outburst happened at that particular moment, Cutler wasn't sure.

"I can't put a definite reason why it happened," he said. "It happened. It's an emotional game. I put a lot into playing quarterback, and I take it seriously. It's just one of the things that happened during the game. Since then, we've talked about it, and it's really behind us."

Cutler discussed the incident "with the powers that be" and with the linemen individually. Did he apologize to Webb?

"That's between me and J'Marcus," Cutler said. "We've talked. It's in the past. We're moving on. He's our left tackle. He's my left tackle, and I expect him each and every week to play at a certain level. And I think he expects himself to play that way, too."

Around the league

Cowboys • Former NFL receiver Sam Hurd is moving closer to a deal to plead guilty in the federal drug-distribution case against him, his attorney said Tuesday.

Prosecutors filed documents Tuesday that said Hurd would plead guilty to one charge of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 5 kilograms or more of cocaine. The charge carries a recommended sentence of 10 years in prison to life.

But attorney Jay Ethington told The Associated Press that the documents were posted prematurely. Ethington said he and prosecutors were still negotiating the terms of any plea agreement — namely which allegations Hurd would acknowledge in an eventual plea.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office in Dallas did not immediately return an email message.

Hurd, 27, played for the Chicago Bears and Dallas Cowboys. He was arrested in December after allegedly accepting cocaine from an undercover agent at a suburban Chicago steakhouse.

According to court documents, Hurd took 1 kilogram — about 2 pounds — of cocaine and told the officer he wanted to eventually buy five to 10 kilograms of cocaine and 1,000 pounds of marijuana per week to distribute in the Chicago area.

Hurd was cut by the Bears after his arrest. He had been free on bail, which was revoked last month when he twice tested positive for marijuana and was accused of trying to buy more drugs earlier this year.

Eagles • Jason Kelce needs season-ending knee surgery, forcing the Eagles to replace another key offensive lineman.

Kelce was placed on injured reserve Tuesday after he had surgery to repair a torn medial collateral ligament in his right knee. Once that heals in about a month, he will have surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament. That'll require six to 12 months recovery time.

"We never really compare these guys to any other player because they all play different positions, they have different body types, and they have different angles in their knees," Philadelphia head athletic trainer Rick Burkholder said. "They have different strengths and weaknesses. But, with everything we know about Kelce, we think that he is going to make a recovery. We think it's going to be an MCL repair, which takes six weeks to heal up, and then an ACL which takes nine months.

"We'll go from there."

The Eagles, off to a 2-0 start for the first time since 2004, were hoping Kelce wouldn't need the ACL operation. On Monday, Burkholder said there was a chance he might return within six weeks. But it was determined during Tuesday's procedure that Kelce will need complete knee reconstruction.

NFL • With the eye of an art history major, Steve Sabol filmed the NFL as a ballet and blockbuster movie all in one.

Half of the father-son team that revolutionized sports broadcasting, the NFL Films president died Tuesday of brain cancer at age 69 in Moorestown, N.J. He leaves behind a league bigger than ever, its fans enthralled by the plot twists and characters he so deftly chronicled.

"Steve Sabol was the creative genius behind the remarkable work of NFL Films," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement from the league confirming Sabol's death. "Steve's passion for football was matched by his incredible talent and energy. Steve's legacy will be part of the NFL forever. He was a major contributor to the success of the NFL, a man who changed the way we look at football and sports, and a great friend."

Sabol was diagnosed with a tumor on the left side of his brain after being hospitalized for a seizure in March 2011.