Cleveland Browns team president Mike Holmgren was on ESPN Radio in Chicago recently, and among the things he talked about was the bashing that Jay Cutler took for not finishing the NFC Championship game this past Sunday:
Whether it was surprising to see and read some of the vitriol that Cutler faced this weekend:
"It really was. And from what I read today, I thought Lovie handled his press conference pretty well considering everything because look it, you’re not playing in this league…there’s no way you’re a starting quarterback in the league and you’re not tough. There’s no way. And there’s no way that you’re not going to play in that ballgame unless you absolutely cannot play. And that goes without saying. Anybody that took cheap shots at him should be ashamed of themselves. Because that’s simply not part of the deal. And the people that know him know that."
Many of you know that I have been a Cutler basher of sorts in the past, but in this case I am on Cutler's side. To ridicule him for not returning to the game is kind of absurd, given how much the game meant and how much of a beating Cutler has endured behind his offensive line the past two years. With that said, based on the attitude he has had around the league, it is not a surprise to see fellow players dishing a few cheap shots right back at him.
Holmgren also talked about the hiring process of a head coach and defensive coordinator in Cleveland:
On what went into the coaching searches for Cleveland’s head coach and defensive coordinator:
"Well first of all in Pat, we had a pretty extensive search. And I went and interviewed formally actually three guys. You know, I talked to Bill Cowher, I talked to Gruden, and I talked to my friends in the league and so on. It really boiled down to three guys and we hired Pat. And all three guys were tremendous. Mike Mularkey, and Perry Fewell who was the defensive coordinator with the Giants, they were great. But I hired Pat because I think we have a good young quarterback and I wanted an offensive minded head coach. It pretty much boiled down to that. And I wanted one that was familiar with the system I was familiar with. Secondly, I think he and Tom Heckert have a history with each other. So the general manager and the personnel part of that should go very smoothly, there shouldn’t be any, well you know how that can be at times. So that’s really why. Then I said in my press conference, and you’ll get a kick out of this, we all love Fritz and he was probably smiling at me for doing this, but I really hired the man. Pat Shurmur is a good man and I think he has a bright future in him. Then in Dick Jauron, Dick was on my staff way back in Green Bay, and we’ve been friends over the years and he’s got a whole bunch of experience. And I just thought it was important to get an experienced defensive coordinator because this is Pat’s first go around as a head coach, and I hope Pat would rely on Dick like I relied on Fritz when I was a young head coach. So I feel very fortunate that we got both those guys, now we’ve got to find an offensive coordinator."