Sunday Notebook: Cutler, weight and more

The strong-armed Jay Cutler has elicited some strong reactions from around the NFL before and after being traded from the Denver Broncos to the Chicago Bears. Several Vikings had their own take on the situation last week as they returned to Winter Park. Plus, Steve Hutchinson talked about his steady weight and Kevin Williams likes the depth at his position. It's all inside.

Defensive end Jared Allen said while he was visiting and entertaining American troops deployed in the Middle East that he received a text message that the Vikings had traded for Jay Cutler. He quickly found out that wasn't true when he texted Cutler.

Once Allen returned to the United States, he joked about his intentions with Cutler now that he's playing for the NFC North rival Chicago Bears and they will face each twice a year.

"Twice a year I'm going to peel the back of his head off the turf," Allen said. "I love the guy, but business is business."

Allen was laughing and joking when he said that during an interview at the Country Music Awards, but he will have to contend with Cutler's mobility and a new left tackle –future Hall of Famer Orlando Pace – if he wants to rattle the Bears' new quarterback.

Cutler won't play a meaningful game for the Chicago Bears for another five months, but he is creating a stir. Rick Spielman, the Vikings vice president of player personnel, told KFAN radio on Friday that he wouldn't be able to judge the trade until he sees how Cutler does in Chicago and how much of a contender the Bears become with him throwing darts.

Everyone with the Vikings seems to understand exactly why the Bears made the move, giving up two first-round picks and QB Kyle Orton to get Cutler.

"They're trying to get better. That's what everyone's goal is in the offseason, to get better," said defensive tackle Kevin Williams. "They think Cutler is the key to making their team better and they made it happen."

Linebacker Ben Leber believes Cutler's mobility will present a challenge for the Vikings.

"He's definitely more of a mobile guy. He's brimming with confidence. We'll have to go in there and try and rattle him. I've seen some games where he can get rattled," Leber said. "We're going to try to take that same approach, get him rattled and try and contain him because he can do some stuff with his feet. He's a good quarterback. I don't know if I would have given up all those picks for him, but it's a good thing I'm not a GM."

Cornerback Karl Paymah, who spent his first four seasons in Denver before the Vikings signed him as a free agent this offseason, was surprised the Broncos traded Cutler, despite the rift that was created between new head coach Josh McDaniels and Cutler. After some time watching the Broncos operate with McDaniels, however, Paymah could see there was a new direction being forged by the first-time head coach.

"It was surprising because the whole team was getting dismantled left and right," Paymah said. "You thought at least you were going to stay with your core, the guys that at least were on the rise – the star quarterback. They wanted to dismantle it from the ground up. It was surprising, and I think they could have went about it in a better way, a little bit more respect for the players, but it's a business."

While the amount that the Bears surrendered for Cutler will be debated, even the Chicago's rivals had to admit that they got better at an important position by acquiring Cutler.

"It's obviously a need they needed to fill," Leber said. "It was such a weird situation going down in Denver. Somebody was bound to get him. I think it's good for them. They obviously improved that part of their team. We'll see what happens. I played him a couple of times and know what type of quarterback he is. We'll have to get after him."


With all the talk surrounding Adrian Peterson's desire to gain weight and head coach Brad Childress believing that a 230-pound playing weight wouldn't be wise, Pro Bowl guard Steve Hutchinson was asked if he wanted to gain any weight this offseason.

"No, I've probably been the same weight for eight years, on the dot, so I don't anticipate any weight change that way, if that's what you're asking," Hutchinson said. "I'm good right now."

Hutchinson said he doesn't have any magic formula to keeping his weight steady.

"It's not like a special diet or anything. I come in after three months of not doing anything, I step on the scale and I'm within two pounds of where I was when I left. It's just luck, I guess. I don't know."


A year ago, Kevin Williams might not have been feeling as comfortable with the Vikings' depth on the defensive line. This year, he likes the moves the team made to retain those players who ended the season with the Vikings.

"I think a year ago, when we lost Spencer (Johnson) and KU (Kenechi Udeze) went down, that kind of killed us with depth along the line. I think they've done a great job trying to sign guys and keep guys around. Jayme (Mitchell) is still here. We've got Jimmy Kennedy and Fred Evans coming back. So it's providing us with some depth out there and that can give me and Pat and some other guys more plays off."

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