It's always disconcerting when you read something Joe Theismann says and immediately think, "You know, that makes a lot of sense." After all, this is the guy who once called Albert Einstein "Norman," and teamed with Matt Millen last season to create one of the worst NFL viewing experiences in recent history.
But it's hard to disagree with Theismann's recent comments about Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, and how he was unfairly treated by players and media after he left the NFC Championship game with a knee injury. We've touched on this before, but at the time, Cutler apparently wasn't injured enough to placate the masses and they inevitably questioned his toughness.
"I just felt like Jay was treated very, very wrongly by other guys in the game," Theismann told the Chicago Tribune. "What nobody wants to talk about is that here’s a guy that actually went back out on the field (in the second half) and tried to play. It wasn’t like he told the coaches: ‘Hey, look, I can’t do anything, I can’t play.’"
Maybe. More likely: the "I'd rather be anywhere but here" bored expression that's perpetually plastered across Cutler's face rubbed some people the wrong way. We're not saying it's right -- just human nature.
Theismann even offers an apt comparison: "What kept running through my mind was the picture of LaDainian Tomlinson sitting on the sidelines during the (2008) AFC Championship Game when Philip Rivers had the knee problems. I started thinking, here’s Jay sitting on the sideline. You’re not on crutches … people have this crazy image that, ‘Well, how hurt can he really be? Doesn’t he understand how important this game is?’"
So cheer up, Jay -- Joe's got your back. And depending on your perspective and political leanings, there's an upside, too: the comedy stylings of Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan.