After hurting his groin in Week 7, Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was given a return time frame of at least one month. Yet Brandon Marshall, Cutler's best friend on the team, was confident his quarterback would be back sooner.
"Look into my eyes right now," Marshall told ESPN 1000's ‘Waddle and Silvy Show' during the team's Week 8 bye. "Jay will be back before four weeks. I'm not ruling out this game (in Week 9), but definitely, worst case scenario, he'll be back for the Lions (in Week 10)."
And sure enough, Cutler returned more than two weeks early to face Detroit. Marshall's clairvoyance at the time surprised most folks, particularly the Bears' training staff, but no one could argue how right he was.
With Chicago's season now over, the question returns to Cutler, who is set to his free agency this offseason, and whether or not he'll return to the Windy City. This time around, Marshall was again willing to play the prophet.
"Jay will be back," Marshall said after today's 33-28 loss to the Green Bay Packers. "All the stories for the offseason, you can just put that at the bottom. Write what you have to say and then say, ‘Brandon said Jay will be back.' Just like I said Jay would be back from the groin injury, Jay will be back [with a new] a contract."
When asked what type of inside information he has, Marshall responded: "I don't have any inside information but he's a heck of a player and that's my quarterback."
Cutler will likely command a hefty contract, unless he's willing to sign at a discount, which could put the team in a salary cap bind considering the countless needs on defense. Many have wondered aloud if the Bears would be better off drafting a younger, cheaper quarterback for coach Marc Trestman to develop, especially considering the success he had with Josh McCown, a career journeyman, this year.
According to Marshall, that won't be happening.
"Jay will be back. You know how I feel about Jay. That's my quarterback. We're attached at the hip."
Jeremy Stoltz is Publisher of BearReport.com and a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. He is in his third season covering the Chicago Bears full time. Follow Bear Report on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Bear Report Web site or magazine, click here.