Brandon Marshall would relish reunion with Jay Cutler
BY SEAN JENSEN firstname.lastname@example.org February 6, 2012 10:18PM
Brandon Marshall and Jay Cutler bonded as Broncos. “Jay is a special talent, and he’s a great friend,” Marshall said. | Jamie Squire~Getty Images
Updated: March 8, 2012 8:16AM
INDIANAPOLIS — A month after a Twitter exchange with the Bears’ starting quarterback, Miami Dolphins receiver Brandon Marshall reiterated his affection for Jay Cutler.
Marshall is under contract through the 2014 season, but he was asked by the Sun-Times if reuniting with his former Denver Broncos teammate would appeal to him.
“Maybe down the road, we may have some extra picks, and we may be able to trade for him,” Marshall said. “But we have a quarterback in place in Matt Moore. He did an amazing job [in the] second half of the season, and where we go from there we’ll see. But Jay is a special talent, and he’s a great friend.”
Marshall said he and Cutler stay in touch.
“We’re very good friends,” Marshall said. “Cutler, man, he’s an amazing guy. He’s probably got one of the biggest hearts. I played with Cutler at a time when I was very young and immature, and his guidance and leadership helped me not fall off the deep end. So Cutler is a very special person to me.”
In July 2011, Marshall announced at a news conference that he had been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, and he hoped to spread awareness about the illness. It has affected him throughout his adult life, and it has played a part in a couple of legal incidents.
On Jan. 8, from his verified Twitter account, Marshall wrote, “I miss Jay Cutler believing in me like that.”
It’s not entirely clear what he was referring to. But it might have been several passes from quarterback Tim Tebow intended for Broncos second-year receiver Demaryius Thomas in the AFC wild-card game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Tebow completed just 10 passes in that game, but four were to Thomas, who turned the catches into 204 yards, including the game-winning touchdown on the first play of overtime.
Shortly after Marshall’s post, Cutler responded, “I can get #15 out of storage! Suit you back up.”
Marshall is known for favoring No. 15.
Marshall answered, “These young duos are the old us.”
Replied Cutler, “Please. We can run circles around these guys.”
Then a Bears fan named Teddy suggested “it’s time to get the Cutler/Marshall duo back together” in Chicago.
“Let’s do it,” Cutler responded.
When Broncos offensive tackle Ryan Clady, who played with Cutler and Marshall, poked fun at their warm exchange, Cutler quipped, “You can join us, big guy.”
All in Twitter fun?
That’s the easy answer.
But there’s no denying the Bears need improved play at receiver and offensive tackle. With longtime general manager Jerry Angelo ousted, no one — including Cutler — has any idea how Phil Emery will approach the offseason.
He has reinforced his belief in Cutler, an important point considering the way things soured for the young quarterback in Denver after coach Mike Shanahan was fired and replaced by Josh McDaniels. But it’s anyone’s guess how Emery will address some of the glaring holes on the roster.
If Marshall is going to be a Bear in 2012, then the Bears will have to trade for him.
A three-time Pro Bowl selection, Marshall is coming off a strong season, despite some sketchy play at quarterback. He finished with 81 catches for 1,214 yards, his fifth consecutive season with 1,000 yards. Marshall had only six touchdowns, but he averaged a healthy 15 yards per catch.
Marshall, who will turn 28 on March 23, has three years left on a five-year, $47.3 million contract he signed in 2010. His contract calls for him to make $9.3 million next season.
The Dolphins finished 6-10, and they fired Tony Sparano and replaced him with former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin. Given his age, production and talent, Marshall wouldn’t appear to be expendable. But, then again, McDaniels traded him for two second-round picks.
Marshall is hopeful.
“We’re coming off a losing season, so we definitely have a bitter taste in our mouth,” he said. “But, hopefully, the new regime can change things around and get us on track.”