Jay Cutler: In the Huddle with Generation-Y

Jay Cutler: Generation Y in the Huddle

You see, Jay-C and I go way back

Jay Cutler played his college ball here in Nashville at Vanderbilt University, and I had the honor, the privilege, of attending the smaller, lesser known, and lesser recognized Belmont Universtiy, located only a few blocks from VU’s campus. Since we had no football team – Vandy was the next best thing, unfortunately, they sucked (attending and winning their first bowl game since WWII last season – yeah, that bad). The 2006 draft came around, and the Titans had their sights on drafting their QB of the future. Vince Young, Matt Leinart, and Jay Cutler all sat together waiting for their name to be called. Much to my dismay, the Titans, or should I say team owner Bud Adams, who has a hard-on for anything ‘Texas’ related, opted to go with Vince Young. Three years later, VY is on the bench, and Jay Cutler is a 25 year old pro-bowl Quarterback.

Welcome to the 2009 NFL off-season. Here’s where things get interesting A little timeline for you: In Denver, long-time hall of fame head coach Mike Shanahan is let go of his coaching duties after leading the Broncos to two Superbowl championships. Newcomer Josh McDaniels enters stage left and immediately starts rocking the boat. The media begins reporting that McDaniels is interested in bringing in another QB to compete for the starting job – this doesn’t sit well with Cutler, who threw for over 4,500 yards and 25 TDs last season. And thus, all hell breaks loose. As soon as Cutler learned there were talks for bringing someone new in, Cutler was infuriated (perhaps rightfully so) – refusing to even speak with his new head coach. Only days later, Cutler demands to be traded and (to my overwhelming exaltation) he got what he wanted and is now, as of Thursday, a proud member of the Chicago Bears (ehem, I’m a huge Bears fan too – for the record).

Why the ‘tude?

Cutler’s attitude has been analyzed and debated extensively over the past few weeks. Recently, he was referred to as “The biggest crybaby in Denver Broncos franchise history” by ESPN’s Mark Schlereth. As I sat and watched the experts analyze and dismantle the Cutler situation, listening to the pundits argue about his attitude, I thought to myself, “This sounds familiar”. Why? Because it’s the same reputation Generation-Y, as a whole, is being labeled with by the ‘outside world’ – over-entitled, crybaby’s, unwilling to take criticism, and so on.

Why did Cutler get so upset? Was it because the team that drafted (hired) him was questioning his value? Was it because his ego took a hit and he didn’t know how to handle it? Maybe his sense of entitlement compelled him to leave his job for a company who didn’t care about him and look for elsewhere for something more self-fulfilling. Jay Cutler’s situation runs parallel to what many young businessmen and women are going through today.

Generation Y = Generation “Why?”

As a generation, part of the reason we get a bad rep or at least are viewed as ‘difficult’ by old-school employers, is that we want our job to have meaning- we (collectively) are not good at taking orders without asking “why”. We’re not interested in just earning a paycheck – and more and more often we’re seeing young adults opt for lower paying jobs if it means their work is more meaningful and personally fulfilling – a generation that isn’t as tempted by the almighty dollar. Corporations and big-business doesn’t know how to handle this, because they’ve never been tested by an entire generation that is compelling them to provide us with a meaningful workplace.

To many, Generation Y is seen as nothing more than a group of people asking ‘why?’ Why am I doing this? Why can’t I have more time off? Why can’t I express myself the way I want? We don’t fit into the mold, we change the mold, we make the mold. We are seeing a transition from work-life balance to life-work balance - with a growing emphisis on life. In fact, it’s not so much a balance as it is an integration of the two. We want our work to to have meaning, it’s very rarely ‘just business’ when it comes to our generation.

Getting back to my good friend Jay’s situation. Maybe his coach didn’t like him, it’s possible there was some friction there from the beginning, but more than likely, Josh McDaniels saw it as ‘just business’ – he was focused on results, which in this case putting together a winning team – and if that meant bringing someone new in at QB, he was willing to do it, or at least entertain the option. But you see, Cutler was focused on the relationship – he’s thinking “What the hell, I’ve done a damn good job here for the past three years, I carried this offense on my shoulders, my relationship with the team and staff should mean something – at least enough for you not to go behind my back and look for my replacement!” It’s the clear results vs. relationship driven business philosophies clashing together.

Are we entitled to be entitled?

I want to turn this over to you guys. What’s your take on this situation? Was Cutler right to demand a trade, get out of his current situation, and pursue someone who would appreciate him more, finding a job that has more value and meaning? Is he an example of Gen-Y ‘mold’ (he is 25 you know)? And in looking at the big picture, as a generation, are we entitled to be entitled? Should we be so focused on our own needs? What happened to focusing on the customer, doing what’s best for the company, and so on? And where does our sense of entitlement come from?

A lot to think about and I’m sure there are some very strong opinions on both ends of the spectrum. Please leave your comments below – I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts and discussion.


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30 Responses
  • Sam Reply

    I like that you are bringing football into the Gen-Y conversation. I’m also happy to see that you’re a big football fan like I am. That said, I think that Cutler took things a little too personally. Maybe McDaniels didn’t deal with the situation in the best manner, but you’re right in saying that his job as coach is to build the best team that he can, no matter what. And Cutler didn’t respond in the best way either.

    I don’t think Gen Y has a right to be “entitled.” That word has a negative connotation for me, but we are certainly within our right to want more out of our jobs, as long as our intentions help and don’t hurt our company.

    • Matt Reply

      Hey Sam!

      I was so excited to hear about Cutler signing with the Bears, and as I got to thinking about his situation, something just clicked, and thus one of my (personal) favorite posts was born!

      I think both of the parties handled this situation poorly. McDaniels was in the wrong by going behind Cutler’s back and looking to bring someone else in to compete (why he didn’t have faith in Cutler in the first place is beyond me – I think he should have looked at upgrading the RB situation or defense – but that’s a totally different conversation).

      Don’t you think it’s weird that ‘entitlement’ is paired with a negative connotation nowadays? Being entitled used to be something to be proud of, and it still can be, but has our generation become ‘excessively entitled’? What happened to making some sacrifices for others, for the good of the customer and the company? What are your thoughts?

  • Sam Reply

    I like that you are bringing football into the Gen-Y conversation. I’m also happy to see that you’re a big football fan like I am. That said, I think that Cutler took things a little too personally. Maybe McDaniels didn’t deal with the situation in the best manner, but you’re right in saying that his job as coach is to build the best team that he can, no matter what. And Cutler didn’t respond in the best way either.

    I don’t think Gen Y has a right to be “entitled.” That word has a negative connotation for me, but we are certainly within our right to want more out of our jobs, as long as our intentions help and don’t hurt our company.

    • Matt Reply

      Hey Sam!

      I was so excited to hear about Cutler signing with the Bears, and as I got to thinking about his situation, something just clicked, and thus one of my (personal) favorite posts was born!

      I think both of the parties handled this situation poorly. McDaniels was in the wrong by going behind Cutler’s back and looking to bring someone else in to compete (why he didn’t have faith in Cutler in the first place is beyond me – I think he should have looked at upgrading the RB situation or defense – but that’s a totally different conversation).

      Don’t you think it’s weird that ‘entitlement’ is paired with a negative connotation nowadays? Being entitled used to be something to be proud of, and it still can be, but has our generation become ‘excessively entitled’? What happened to making some sacrifices for others, for the good of the customer and the company? What are your thoughts?

  • Akhila Reply

    Honestly, I know nothing about sports. But I love how you’re combining various topics with Gen Y/social media issues (sports, religion, social change, etc) – it’s very cool and unique!

    About being overly entitled – yes I do think there’s a point where we have to stop feeling entitled. I think Gen Y has to be confident, of course, but not entitled. This just reinforces the stereotype that people have of us and gives everyone a negative impression. In fact I think it’s wrong for anyone to be entitled.

    And I think a problem with our generation is that there’s so little company loyalty. People just go for the best job, the best salary, or whatever seems prestigious. And when a better opportunity comes along, they’re going to take it. There’s so little loyalty and I feel like that’s one thing that separates us from past generations. I’m not sure that’s necessarily a good thing.

    • Matt Reply

      Akhila – thanks for getting involved in this discussion!

      I wrote this post thinking about how I could cross genres and connect with sport fans and non-sport fans alike. I think Cutler is a model for the Gen-Y stereotype. Not because of his lack of loyalty, but because once his validity and value were questioned – once he faced adversity, he immediately looked for a way out.

      In reality (and sorry to get all sports-talk on you) football is a business. The head coach was probably considering a back-up plan in case something happened to Cutler (he also has type-1 Diabetes, so his overall health is a concern). Look at what happened when Tom Brady was injured last season – The Patriots had a solid backup plan with Matt Cassell and still salvaged a decent season – but what happens if there is no backup, what happens when a company puts all of their faith into one person? That is a lot of risk that (most) companies – in this case the Broncos, are not willing to take. Cutler just couldn’t see it from a ‘just business’ perspective, something Gen-Y overall can atone with.

      Where do you think our sense of entitlement comes from? Why do WE crave and demand more meaningful work? We aren’t the first ‘group’ to ponder the meaning of life – so what makes us so different and unique? Or are we at all? Maybe we’re like every other generation, criticized by the one’s that have come before us. Interested to hear your (and everyone’s thoughts on this).

  • Akhila Reply

    Honestly, I know nothing about sports. But I love how you’re combining various topics with Gen Y/social media issues (sports, religion, social change, etc) – it’s very cool and unique!

    About being overly entitled – yes I do think there’s a point where we have to stop feeling entitled. I think Gen Y has to be confident, of course, but not entitled. This just reinforces the stereotype that people have of us and gives everyone a negative impression. In fact I think it’s wrong for anyone to be entitled.

    And I think a problem with our generation is that there’s so little company loyalty. People just go for the best job, the best salary, or whatever seems prestigious. And when a better opportunity comes along, they’re going to take it. There’s so little loyalty and I feel like that’s one thing that separates us from past generations. I’m not sure that’s necessarily a good thing.

    • Matt Reply

      Akhila – thanks for getting involved in this discussion!

      I wrote this post thinking about how I could cross genres and connect with sport fans and non-sport fans alike. I think Cutler is a model for the Gen-Y stereotype. Not because of his lack of loyalty, but because once his validity and value were questioned – once he faced adversity, he immediately looked for a way out.

      In reality (and sorry to get all sports-talk on you) football is a business. The head coach was probably considering a back-up plan in case something happened to Cutler (he also has type-1 Diabetes, so his overall health is a concern). Look at what happened when Tom Brady was injured last season – The Patriots had a solid backup plan with Matt Cassell and still salvaged a decent season – but what happens if there is no backup, what happens when a company puts all of their faith into one person? That is a lot of risk that (most) companies – in this case the Broncos, are not willing to take. Cutler just couldn’t see it from a ‘just business’ perspective, something Gen-Y overall can atone with.

      Where do you think our sense of entitlement comes from? Why do WE crave and demand more meaningful work? We aren’t the first ‘group’ to ponder the meaning of life – so what makes us so different and unique? Or are we at all? Maybe we’re like every other generation, criticized by the one’s that have come before us. Interested to hear your (and everyone’s thoughts on this).

  • Ryan Stephens Reply

    Matt,

    I often steer very far away from these conversations because the powers that be won’t typically like my answers, but my honest opinion is that Cutler MAY have over-reacted a little bit, but in the entire scheme of the situation I think we was right to ask out.

    Does everyone have that luxury? No certainly not. If Tavaris Jackson and Kyle Boller all of a sudden want out, they’re not going to be another team’s franchise QB. Cutler, on the other hand, was performing his job at a very high level — and that gives him leverage.

    Akhila said, “And when a better opportunity comes along, they’re going to take it. There’s so little loyalty and I feel like that’s one thing that separates us from past generations.”

    And I get it, especially in our current economic climate. Those of us that have good jobs should be thankful for that (and I certainly am), but how would you feel if your boss went behind your back and looked for someone to replace you? That person didn’t end up taking your job, should you tuck your tail?

    Maybe. Maybe not. If you’re performing at a high level and your work isn’t being appreciated I say your damn straight you’re entitled to put some feelers out there and test the water. At the opposite end of the spectrum, you could be passing your time, going through the motions. In this case, it’s a wake up call to get your act together.

    You also have to step back from the situation and understand from your bosses perspective. They wouldn’t go after someone else unless they thought they could do a better job than you (or were just better friends/closer to that person.) Most people with respect to themselves are incapable of seeing all the angles.

    Talented members of Gen Y WILL BE LOYAL if you give them a reason to be. If you respect them, teach them, tell them what they did well (and tell them what they didn’t, and how to improve it), explain to them why the task they’re doing is integral to work moving forward — guess what? They’ll be loyal. It’s not as hard as it sounds.

    Great post Matt, and thanks for your recent comments on RSM.

    R

    • Matt Reply

      Hey Ryan – thanks for stopping by and adding to this conversation – I am loving all the different perspectives people have to offer on this topic.

      Two things: One – I agree with you on the leverage point – Cutler is a 25 year old Pro Bowl QB performing at an extremely high level in the prime of his career, his play on the field gives him a lot more power to control his own destiny off of it. That being said, I think he handled the situation a little immaturely (given – we probably only know about half of the situation). I don’t know that McDaniels was looking for a replacement, rather – I think he was trying to sure up the backup position – can you name the Bronco’s back up? I can’t. I think bringing in a solid backup is a smart decision – Cutler wasn’t able to rationalize the ‘business’ of the situation. In the end – he got what he wanted because he could – so good for him, good for the Bears, and good for the me as a die-hard Chicago Bears fan, I couldn’t be happier to have him.

      Second – your point about loyalty. I agree that if employers give their staff a reason to be loyal, explaining to them the ‘why’ behind things, and so on – we will be more than happy to show our loyalty. So let me ask this of you – do you think it’s the responsibility of an employer to always go above and beyond to make sure you know the ‘why’ to everything. Many employers, especially larger corporations, just want someone to come in and do a job – they’re not concerned with going out of their way to make sure all of their staff is passionate about the work they do. Do you think we (Gen-Y) needs to do a better job conforming to the corporate structure, or is it the other way around? Should they conform to us?

      Thanks for the comment Ryan – look forward to hearing more of your thoughts!

      • Ryan Stephens Reply

        Matt,

        The reality is that there isn’t one right way to answer that question. It depends on each individual task being delegated and the goals of those tasks. It ALSO depends on the employee working there.

        Some people are more than happy to do their 9-5, make a solid salary, be a corporate drone (they aren’t all drones – cog in the system maybe?) and forget work the second they step out of the office.

        Personally, I’m different. I want to know my contribution is for a reason. If it’s a bullshit reason, tell me that too – but I want to know. It’s rare work leaves when I leave the office. I want to do something that I’m passionate enough about that work/life kind of intertwines itself.

        I think that most great companies will instill in their companies a way to value their workers so maybe the big wigs don’t tell answer the ‘why,’ but they’ve instructed Johnny Middle Manager to try to do that for passionate employees that want to make a difference.

        Hope this clarifies.

        • Matt Reply

          Ryan – I agree, there are many folks who are more than happy working a nine to five, leaving the office and leaving work AT the office – there are many who are able to divide work and life, have a solid balance, and live a happy and productive life.

          I side with you on this one – I want to know I am contributing, I want to know I am a valued asset to the company and not just a seat filler. Even though we may not be entitled to the entitlement we think we should be receiving, I think that everyone is entitled to know their worth without a companies culture. It’s hard to be productive and loyal when your unaware of your contributions and perceived value.You mentioned that the middle-manager may be responsible for reinforcing your value to the company, but I think it’s imperative for the higher ups, at least from time to time, to show that they’re human and make an effort to establish a connection with even the lowest folks on the totem pole.

          Is it so bad to want more from our everyday lives? Are we at fault for bringing a new found independence and sense of self-worth to the work place? I think not.

          Thanks again for coming by and getting involved Ryan!

  • Ryan Stephens Reply

    Matt,

    I often steer very far away from these conversations because the powers that be won’t typically like my answers, but my honest opinion is that Cutler MAY have over-reacted a little bit, but in the entire scheme of the situation I think we was right to ask out.

    Does everyone have that luxury? No certainly not. If Tavaris Jackson and Kyle Boller all of a sudden want out, they’re not going to be another team’s franchise QB. Cutler, on the other hand, was performing his job at a very high level — and that gives him leverage.

    Akhila said, “And when a better opportunity comes along, they’re going to take it. There’s so little loyalty and I feel like that’s one thing that separates us from past generations.”

    And I get it, especially in our current economic climate. Those of us that have good jobs should be thankful for that (and I certainly am), but how would you feel if your boss went behind your back and looked for someone to replace you? That person didn’t end up taking your job, should you tuck your tail?

    Maybe. Maybe not. If you’re performing at a high level and your work isn’t being appreciated I say your damn straight you’re entitled to put some feelers out there and test the water. At the opposite end of the spectrum, you could be passing your time, going through the motions. In this case, it’s a wake up call to get your act together.

    You also have to step back from the situation and understand from your bosses perspective. They wouldn’t go after someone else unless they thought they could do a better job than you (or were just better friends/closer to that person.) Most people with respect to themselves are incapable of seeing all the angles.

    Talented members of Gen Y WILL BE LOYAL if you give them a reason to be. If you respect them, teach them, tell them what they did well (and tell them what they didn’t, and how to improve it), explain to them why the task they’re doing is integral to work moving forward — guess what? They’ll be loyal. It’s not as hard as it sounds.

    Great post Matt, and thanks for your recent comments on RSM.

    R

    • Matt Reply

      Hey Ryan – thanks for stopping by and adding to this conversation – I am loving all the different perspectives people have to offer on this topic.

      Two things: One – I agree with you on the leverage point – Cutler is a 25 year old Pro Bowl QB performing at an extremely high level in the prime of his career, his play on the field gives him a lot more power to control his own destiny off of it. That being said, I think he handled the situation a little immaturely (given – we probably only know about half of the situation). I don’t know that McDaniels was looking for a replacement, rather – I think he was trying to sure up the backup position – can you name the Bronco’s back up? I can’t. I think bringing in a solid backup is a smart decision – Cutler wasn’t able to rationalize the ‘business’ of the situation. In the end – he got what he wanted because he could – so good for him, good for the Bears, and good for the me as a die-hard Chicago Bears fan, I couldn’t be happier to have him.

      Second – your point about loyalty. I agree that if employers give their staff a reason to be loyal, explaining to them the ‘why’ behind things, and so on – we will be more than happy to show our loyalty. So let me ask this of you – do you think it’s the responsibility of an employer to always go above and beyond to make sure you know the ‘why’ to everything. Many employers, especially larger corporations, just want someone to come in and do a job – they’re not concerned with going out of their way to make sure all of their staff is passionate about the work they do. Do you think we (Gen-Y) needs to do a better job conforming to the corporate structure, or is it the other way around? Should they conform to us?

      Thanks for the comment Ryan – look forward to hearing more of your thoughts!

      • Ryan Stephens Reply

        Matt,

        The reality is that there isn’t one right way to answer that question. It depends on each individual task being delegated and the goals of those tasks. It ALSO depends on the employee working there.

        Some people are more than happy to do their 9-5, make a solid salary, be a corporate drone (they aren’t all drones – cog in the system maybe?) and forget work the second they step out of the office.

        Personally, I’m different. I want to know my contribution is for a reason. If it’s a bullshit reason, tell me that too – but I want to know. It’s rare work leaves when I leave the office. I want to do something that I’m passionate enough about that work/life kind of intertwines itself.

        I think that most great companies will instill in their companies a way to value their workers so maybe the big wigs don’t tell answer the ‘why,’ but they’ve instructed Johnny Middle Manager to try to do that for passionate employees that want to make a difference.

        Hope this clarifies.

        • Matt Reply

          Ryan – I agree, there are many folks who are more than happy working a nine to five, leaving the office and leaving work AT the office – there are many who are able to divide work and life, have a solid balance, and live a happy and productive life.

          I side with you on this one – I want to know I am contributing, I want to know I am a valued asset to the company and not just a seat filler. Even though we may not be entitled to the entitlement we think we should be receiving, I think that everyone is entitled to know their worth without a companies culture. It’s hard to be productive and loyal when your unaware of your contributions and perceived value.You mentioned that the middle-manager may be responsible for reinforcing your value to the company, but I think it’s imperative for the higher ups, at least from time to time, to show that they’re human and make an effort to establish a connection with even the lowest folks on the totem pole.

          Is it so bad to want more from our everyday lives? Are we at fault for bringing a new found independence and sense of self-worth to the work place? I think not.

          Thanks again for coming by and getting involved Ryan!

  • Tim Nichols Reply

    Matt,

    Like you, I see Jay from the point of his VU career and nothing he did here while he was, as I like to say, eating Dudley Dirt gave anyone any indication he was, or is, a crybaby.

    Maybe the crit is leveled at Gen-Y, maybe not. Jay’s baby-faced appearance probably adds fuel to the fire for the critics. Also, perhaps the medications he is using (if any) to battle the Diabetes 1 illness are causing mood swings.

    We see issues all the time with athletes being more irresponsible than Jay Cutler. That perspective from an increasing number of folks fed up with such behavior could add to the equation as well.

    I think time will bear witness that Jay Cutler will continue to grow as a person and player, eventually standing on a podium at Canton. Josh McDaniel, however, won’t be his presenter.

    Keep up the good work. I don’t know where I picked up your link, but I like what I’m reading and will continue to read often.

    Tim

    • Matt Reply

      Tim, thanks for coming by man, I’m loving these newcomers to the community – I hope you’ll stick around and shed some insight onto past and future discussions!

      I agree with your stance on Cutler. In the end, neither party was perfect in the way the situation was handled, but I think we’re witnessing the maturity of a QB who has had a ton of success very early in his career and (may) not know how to handle it yet. He’ll be the face of the Bears franchise for the next decade (I don’t see any way they let a guy like him go for a LONG time). And 10-15 years from now (guys are playing into their 40’s these days) he’ll have his name etched into the HOF.

      Thanks again for coming by Tim – look forward to hearing more from you!

  • Tim Nichols Reply

    Matt,

    Like you, I see Jay from the point of his VU career and nothing he did here while he was, as I like to say, eating Dudley Dirt gave anyone any indication he was, or is, a crybaby.

    Maybe the crit is leveled at Gen-Y, maybe not. Jay’s baby-faced appearance probably adds fuel to the fire for the critics. Also, perhaps the medications he is using (if any) to battle the Diabetes 1 illness are causing mood swings.

    We see issues all the time with athletes being more irresponsible than Jay Cutler. That perspective from an increasing number of folks fed up with such behavior could add to the equation as well.

    I think time will bear witness that Jay Cutler will continue to grow as a person and player, eventually standing on a podium at Canton. Josh McDaniel, however, won’t be his presenter.

    Keep up the good work. I don’t know where I picked up your link, but I like what I’m reading and will continue to read often.

    Tim

    • Matt Reply

      Tim, thanks for coming by man, I’m loving these newcomers to the community – I hope you’ll stick around and shed some insight onto past and future discussions!

      I agree with your stance on Cutler. In the end, neither party was perfect in the way the situation was handled, but I think we’re witnessing the maturity of a QB who has had a ton of success very early in his career and (may) not know how to handle it yet. He’ll be the face of the Bears franchise for the next decade (I don’t see any way they let a guy like him go for a LONG time). And 10-15 years from now (guys are playing into their 40’s these days) he’ll have his name etched into the HOF.

      Thanks again for coming by Tim – look forward to hearing more from you!

  • Benjamin Wilcox Reply

    Matt,

    Great post with a new spin on a controversial story. I feel that Josh McDaniels is totally in the wrong here. If you come to be the Head Coach of a playoff caliber team, you should attempt to meet and establish a good working relationship with your Pro Bowl athletes, period. Cassel would never have performed the way that Cutler did in Denver and it was idiotic for McDaniels to try to replace the Pro Bowl quarterback.

    I agree that he is portrayed as part of our generation, seen as ‘one of those darn whiny youngsters who are never happy.’ But, if we look to other NFL players, it is not hard to find players who performed at a high level, became unhappy with their leadership, complained publicly about it and then got their way in the end (see T.O., Randy Moss, Eli Manning, etc.) The NFL has become especially tolerant of entitled players and the teams that start players like this continue to excel.

    I don’t want to jinx him, but I think Cutler has the potential to perform to a much higher level than he ever did in Denver. The Bears defense will give him much needed support and time off the field. I am not sure exactly about the stat, but when the opposing team scored less than 21 points, Cutler’s record was 13-0.

    People in any job, especially those who perform well at any job deserve to be treated with respect and will go elsewhere if this is not the case. This is not a case of entitlement, it is a case of the old players not agreeing with the newly hired leadership.

    • Matt Reply

      Two things – both in agreement:

      One – Josh McDaniels was an idiot for the way he handled the situation. Why would you come in and rock the boat? The Broncos have a lot of issues, but not at QB. He should have came in and looked at getting Cutler some support with a decent RB and working on that terrible defense.

      Two – I think Cutler has HUGE potential in Chicago as long as he stays healthy. He would benefit from having ONE veteran WR (I’m hoping they sign Torry Holt). With the Bears he has an outstanding running back (who is going into only his second year mind you), great special teams that will give him short fields to work with, and a good (not great – they are ageing) defense. I’m looking forward to the upcoming season; I can’t wait for opening weekend, Sunday night, at Lambeau: Going to be a classic.

  • Benjamin Wilcox Reply

    Matt,

    Great post with a new spin on a controversial story. I feel that Josh McDaniels is totally in the wrong here. If you come to be the Head Coach of a playoff caliber team, you should attempt to meet and establish a good working relationship with your Pro Bowl athletes, period. Cassel would never have performed the way that Cutler did in Denver and it was idiotic for McDaniels to try to replace the Pro Bowl quarterback.

    I agree that he is portrayed as part of our generation, seen as ‘one of those darn whiny youngsters who are never happy.’ But, if we look to other NFL players, it is not hard to find players who performed at a high level, became unhappy with their leadership, complained publicly about it and then got their way in the end (see T.O., Randy Moss, Eli Manning, etc.) The NFL has become especially tolerant of entitled players and the teams that start players like this continue to excel.

    I don’t want to jinx him, but I think Cutler has the potential to perform to a much higher level than he ever did in Denver. The Bears defense will give him much needed support and time off the field. I am not sure exactly about the stat, but when the opposing team scored less than 21 points, Cutler’s record was 13-0.

    People in any job, especially those who perform well at any job deserve to be treated with respect and will go elsewhere if this is not the case. This is not a case of entitlement, it is a case of the old players not agreeing with the newly hired leadership.

    • Matt Reply

      Two things – both in agreement:

      One – Josh McDaniels was an idiot for the way he handled the situation. Why would you come in and rock the boat? The Broncos have a lot of issues, but not at QB. He should have came in and looked at getting Cutler some support with a decent RB and working on that terrible defense.

      Two – I think Cutler has HUGE potential in Chicago as long as he stays healthy. He would benefit from having ONE veteran WR (I’m hoping they sign Torry Holt). With the Bears he has an outstanding running back (who is going into only his second year mind you), great special teams that will give him short fields to work with, and a good (not great – they are ageing) defense. I’m looking forward to the upcoming season; I can’t wait for opening weekend, Sunday night, at Lambeau: Going to be a classic.

  • Shanelle Reply

    Interesting subject matter when you consider that Josh McDaniels is a huge success in his own right and frankly is only a bit older than Cutler, placing him in what will probably be noted as the XY generation, too young to be Gen X and too old to be Gen Y, in terms of temperment. Yes, Cutler did a good job with the Broncos, but there is no denying McDaniels is a phenom in his own right and perhaps the conflict comes from both men being a bit entitled. I am inclined to believe that you give McDaniels more leeway as an organization because his loyalty and his temperament will probably create the new “persona” of the organization whereas at this point we don’t really know if Cutler has the personality to carry and define the Broncos.

    But are we entitled to be entitled? I would say, there is a certain lack of accountability that this generation lacks, but this is because they were told they could do anything, be anything and were not exposed in large respect to the refining practice of criticism. I am the eldest of gen y group (which I place at 27,28 years old) and I wasn’t exposed to it either and consequently was perpetually looking for a job that “valued” me when I should have been looking around at how I could add value. I have learned that for me, looking outside myself and my needs, my work life balence, etc, I was able to carve a niche that really worked for me.

    I don’t think we are nearly as special as we have been told and that is a hard reality to look down

    • Matt Reply

      @Shanelle – thanks for coming by. I have to respectively disagree with the last line of your post: I don’t think we are nearly as special as we have been told and that is a hard reality to look down.

      That’s too pessimistic of a perspective in my mind – I think that we all are very unique and special, it’s just more difficult for some people to tap into that, and more importantly, translate their uniqueness into success.

      What I do think, is that our judgment is easy clouded by this sense of entitlement, this sense that we should be able to do whatever we want that gives us the most meaning to our lives, without ‘paying our dues’ so to speak. There is a fine line between arrogance and confidence – and it’s important to not let yourself get self-absorbed and neglect realism.

  • Shanelle Reply

    Interesting subject matter when you consider that Josh McDaniels is a huge success in his own right and frankly is only a bit older than Cutler, placing him in what will probably be noted as the XY generation, too young to be Gen X and too old to be Gen Y, in terms of temperment. Yes, Cutler did a good job with the Broncos, but there is no denying McDaniels is a phenom in his own right and perhaps the conflict comes from both men being a bit entitled. I am inclined to believe that you give McDaniels more leeway as an organization because his loyalty and his temperament will probably create the new “persona” of the organization whereas at this point we don’t really know if Cutler has the personality to carry and define the Broncos.

    But are we entitled to be entitled? I would say, there is a certain lack of accountability that this generation lacks, but this is because they were told they could do anything, be anything and were not exposed in large respect to the refining practice of criticism. I am the eldest of gen y group (which I place at 27,28 years old) and I wasn’t exposed to it either and consequently was perpetually looking for a job that “valued” me when I should have been looking around at how I could add value. I have learned that for me, looking outside myself and my needs, my work life balence, etc, I was able to carve a niche that really worked for me.

    I don’t think we are nearly as special as we have been told and that is a hard reality to look down

    • Matt Reply

      @Shanelle – thanks for coming by. I have to respectively disagree with the last line of your post: I don’t think we are nearly as special as we have been told and that is a hard reality to look down.

      That’s too pessimistic of a perspective in my mind – I think that we all are very unique and special, it’s just more difficult for some people to tap into that, and more importantly, translate their uniqueness into success.

      What I do think, is that our judgment is easy clouded by this sense of entitlement, this sense that we should be able to do whatever we want that gives us the most meaning to our lives, without ‘paying our dues’ so to speak. There is a fine line between arrogance and confidence – and it’s important to not let yourself get self-absorbed and neglect realism.

  • @MattWilsontv Reply

    Hey Matt, honestly, I hate Jay Cutler–he’s not a team player and his ego is bigger than the team. I think he is just another gen y person who thinks he is a superstar and gives us a bad name.

    I’m very heavy on entrepreneurship and doing your own thing, but in football you have to fit the mold. There is very little room for self expression, other than maybe throwing some snowballs and having huge passion for the game. I think his leadership was seriously flawed in Denver and his antics were not received well by the team. I think it skewed the whole chemistry of the team–just look at Brandon Marshall.

    I’m also huge on leadership and leading by example. A quarterback is supposed to come in and do everything right, be the guy that everyone looks up to and that didn’t happen in Denver. Cutler could have sucked it up and gotten other guys to step up to the plate and play their roles, but instead he acted as an individual, not a teammate and that’s not what wins championships.

    You have a knack for writing stuff that makes people think–keep up the great work Matt, I love comparing sports and business.

  • @MattWilsontv Reply

    Hey Matt, honestly, I hate Jay Cutler–he’s not a team player and his ego is bigger than the team. I think he is just another gen y person who thinks he is a superstar and gives us a bad name.

    I’m very heavy on entrepreneurship and doing your own thing, but in football you have to fit the mold. There is very little room for self expression, other than maybe throwing some snowballs and having huge passion for the game. I think his leadership was seriously flawed in Denver and his antics were not received well by the team. I think it skewed the whole chemistry of the team–just look at Brandon Marshall.

    I’m also huge on leadership and leading by example. A quarterback is supposed to come in and do everything right, be the guy that everyone looks up to and that didn’t happen in Denver. Cutler could have sucked it up and gotten other guys to step up to the plate and play their roles, but instead he acted as an individual, not a teammate and that’s not what wins championships.

    You have a knack for writing stuff that makes people think–keep up the great work Matt, I love comparing sports and business.

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