Something isnt entirely lining up in all of the emotional accountablejobs talk and whats going to happen after the season.
The unnamed target of Marshalls accountabilityjobs declaration was assumed to be offensive coordinator Mike Tice. Marshall certainly wasnt talking about himself, or buddy Jay Cutler. Other wide-receiver jobs already have changed hands and the offensive line was one revolving calliope of accountability in the Green Bay game.
But heres the thing:
Cutler did not mesh with Ron Turner; the two had history going back to high school and college scholarships, and Turner was kept a tight rein on everyone.
Mike Martz was the next step up the doctrinaire chain. That didnt work for Cutler.
Tice, however, is a proven consensus manager. What that means is that coaches have not-insignificant input into game plans.
And so do quarterbacks.
If Cutler and Marshall are subtly or not so subtly attacking the play calling and game planning, it happens to be game plans in which Cutler has had a hand. The plan is developed and the quarterback involved heavily on what plays he likes, doesnt like, is or isnt comfortable with, and so on. Jeremy Bates, Cutlers hand-picked position coach, is involved.
And heres the kicker: Tice afforded Cutler the freedom to audible. If the play calling isnt to Cutlers liking, well
As for after changes after the season, I dont think we can worry about that right now, Cutler said. Weve got to worry about Arizona and then whatever happens at the end of the season, thats going to be a cause for concern and Phils going to do whatevers right for this team.
Good idea to give a shout-out to the general manager, who also happens to be the guy in whose hands Cutlers chances for a contract extension rest.
What about 15?
The work and demeanor of Brandon Marshall has been exceptional this season. But be careful of something here.
Losing doesnt automatically build character but it does unfailingly reveal it. Marshall was upset after the Packers throttled him for two catches in Green Bay. He lost his cool at the end of a difficult first half in San Francisco. And his accountable outburst was after another losing performance against the Packers.
The problem here is public criticism.
Cutler showing up teammates with mannerisms is no different than calling out unspecified players or coaches or whomever after a bad game.
That said, Marshall at least knows he fouled up a little bit there.
This is a new role for me as far as leadership, he said. I know Im not perfect. Maybe Im approaching it the wrong way, but there are different ways you can lead. You can lead by example. You can lead by encouragement. You can lead by speaking, creative energy. There are so many different ways. You can lead sometimes by calling guys out. That depends on the situation.
Ive been reading a lot of books on leadership, studying documentaries on some of the greats like Ray Lewis and Michael Jordan and their approach to the game and more importantly just leadership. This is my first year of really being in this role in a positive way.
Ripping people publicly isnt a positive way, much as it might make for good sound bytes or quotes.
And regarding 54.
Heres a last thought on Brian Urlachers vented frustration at the fans for their booing and the media segment that simply wants Lovie Smith fired.
The booing was directed primarily at the offense, which again had not only failed to score more than one touchdown, but had managed that dubious feat in spite of:
first-and-goal from the Green Bay 5field goal;
the special-teams takeaway at the Green Bay 16zero yards, field goal; and
56 seconds remaining on the clock, final possession. ran a total of three plays, net one yard.
The point is that Urlacher was mad about teammates being booed and he was at least sticking up, misguided or not, for the whole team. The defense wasnt being booed; that group allowed the Packers 14 points plus the seven on a 26-yard drive following Cutlers interception just before halftime.
It was Urlacher getting defensive over the Bears, not just Lovie Smith.