It's Better to Give than Receive

Lake Forest - Chad Hutchinson distributed the ball to seven different receivers in the Bears 24-14 victory over the Minnesota Vikings. While one game does not make a career, Hutchinson's willingness to get everyone involved should pay dividends down the line.

Justin Gage, who had 8 catches through 11 games, had two receptions for 31 yards, including a 20-yard gain that converted a third and 16. Gage was effusive in his praise of Hutchinson, characterizing him as ‘the missing link of this offensive system.'

"There's a whole new feeling with Chad out there," Gage said. What we saw from him today was exactly what he has been showing the team in practice. Sometimes that kind of play does translate to a game situation, but in Chad's case he got even better when it counted."

For that being said many have wondered why Hutchinson was given a shot earlier as the offense scored 13 points over a three-game stretch.

"Because Chad had never been in an offensive huddle and we were going to go into probably a two-minute mode as much as we needed to that fourth quarter (against Dallas)," said offensive coordinator Terry Shea. "That was not the right time for Chad Hutchinson. It would have been totally, and I want to underline this, totally an injustice to Chad Hutchinson to put him in in that situation.

"It was the perfect scenario for Chad Hutchinson, yes. I wish I could say that it was the perfect scenario for our offense, but it wasn't."

As much as winning a game will put a smile on the face of the team, a quarterback's charisma can be even more important.

"I think it shows up in game day as much as it does in any other form and when you are successful at the quarterback position, all of a sudden your charisma starts to generate some pretty positive vibes," offensive coordinator Terry Shea. "But I will say this about this guy we have right now: He brings a very open and a very easy attitude about himself to where the players feel very comfortable with him. Maybe that's his intangible that he brings."

Hutchinson is known for having a strong arm, but his mobility had come into question, as did his baseball type windup.

"Chad can have all of his ‘go-to' guys running all over the field confusing the defense," Gage said. "The Vikings were never really sure where he was going to throw. And the fact that he can get out of the pocket quickly just adds one more aspect to our arsenal."

Jason McKie, who up until the game had only one catch for a total of 10 yards, came away with a 5-yard touchdown pass during the fourth quarter.

"At last, we have something to build on," McKie said. "Chad had always told us that one big play can turn things around. But this time, it was a series of big plays. He came in today and sparked everybody to play at a high level. If you look at the statistics you'll see a lot of players were contributing to this win, players like myself who have seen very limited action this year. I can say that I'm feeling a lot better about this season right now."


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