Quick Note – On Jay Cutler’s Mechanics

Brad Biggs at the Chicago Tribune reviews the tape from Sunday’s game:

“Cutler spread the ball around and made some plays while improvising, including a 24-yard completion to Forte. In the face of pressure, he was strong. Cutler didn’t fall into his past habit of regularly throwing off his back foot. The ball came out quickly and he completed 66 percent of his throws, not counting the spike to stop the clock.”

The point about Cutler not throwing off of his back foot got by me and it’s a good one. Cutler’s mechanics were notably better last week than they had been in the past and this can almost certainly be credited in part to the efforts of head coach Marc Trestman and quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh.

But I’m inclined to give the most credit to offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer who insists that the offensive line be strong up the middle with an emphasis on good guard play. Keeping a pocket in front of Cutler almost certainly had as much to do with allowing him to step into his throws. I don’t remember Cutler stepping up into the pocket much but ideally that’s almost certainly what we’re going to see him start to do more as its kept clean and defenders are not allowed into his face.

Quick Note – Offensive “Adjustments” Made Simple

Many people noted after the Bears game that they liked the “adjustments” that the Bears made at halftime of the Bengals game last Sunday. I actually couldn’t put my finger on anything that could be identified as different (other than they moved the ball a lot better). Indeed, when I pressed people to tell me something more specific, freely confessing that I’d missed the boat, they also struggled to tell me exactly what changed.

As far as I can tell, it turns out that the biggest adjustment was fairly simple. Head coach Marc Trestman explains via Adam L. Jahns at the Chicago Sun-Times:

“We’ve got to get our pads down on both sides of the ball. It’s not unusual to see players playing high in the first game and the team that has the lower pad level is usually the team that moves the line of scrimmage. Our pads got much lower in the second half and we played better.”

That was undoubtedly not the only adjustment. But it’s good to know that the game still comes down to fundamentals when its all said and done.