Players and coaches maintained all week that Thursday night in Green Bay against the Packers would be just another game. As expected; a balanced mindset is as important as a balanced offense and there’s usually little benefit from ramping up the gravity or importance of a game.
But for Jay Cutler, who’d never won a game in Lambeau Field as a starting quarterback, this wasn’t just another game and teammates knew it.
“I’m sure there have been times in the past where he played well and he hasn’t had his back,” said tackle Kyle Long. “We got Jay’s back, and he knows that, and he was excited.”
Cutler kept his head while many in Lambeau Field were losing theirs, completing 19 of 31 passes for a modest 200 yards (189 net) and a touchdown and passer rating of 90.8. The result was a 17-13 win, the third in the last four for the Bears and the eighth in Cutler’s last nine with a passer rating of 88 or better.
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The one-time NFL poster QB for interceptions, who showed his focus on ball security by going virtually the first two weeks of training camp without throwing a single interception, threw none on Thursday. It was his fourth INT-free game in 10 this season after five all last season. Cutler threw two or more interceptions in seven of his 15 games last season; he has yet to throw two in a game this season.
The only other time Cutler has beaten the Green Bay Packers as a starting quarterback came in 2010 and the Bears needed 18 Packers penalties to escape with a 20-17 victory. So “yeah, it’s huge,” Cutler said Thursday.
“It’s been a fun week, for me. The Sunday game, and having a baby on Monday, and turning around and playing Thursday. So now I think that everyone is looking forward to going home and spending some time with family.”