At a hastily arranged press conference this morning, the Chicago Bears announced that they would make quarterback Jay Cutler the team’s new head coach. The move would make Cutler the team’s first player-coach since George Halas.
“We thought long and hard about how to find a coach who would get along with Jay Cutler, our most important player,” said general manager Phil Emery, as he and Cutler stood behind a podium at Halas Hall. “Ultimately, we decided Jay was the right man for the job. Nobody understands what motivates Jay the way Jay does. And nobody knows how to get more out of Cutler than Cutler.”
The Bears fired head coach Lovie Smith last week after a 10-6 season in which the team failed to reach the playoffs. Bears officials said they would seek a coach who could turn the team around quickly and create an effective offensive strategy.
“Coach Lovie did a great job,” Cutler said, after being introduced to the media. “My hiring is no reflection on his ability. But I think I have a better sense than he did about how to get me to keep my head in the game and how to prevent me from making the same kind of bone-headed mistakes I’ve made in the past. I intend to take a tough-love approach and if I don’t respond, I’ll find myself on the bench, along with most of my offensive line. There will be no prima donnas on this team. There’s no ‘I’ in ‘coach.’”
Cutler said his first act as coach would be hiring wide receiver Brandon Marshall as offensive coordinator.
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