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Chicago Bears Video Breakdown: Jay Cutler's Interception Vs. Colts

Jay Cutler and the Chicago Bears stumbled early on in Week 1 and gave up an interception return for a touchdown. Steve von Horn of SB Nation Chicago breaks down exactly what happened on that ugly pick 6 play.

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I think everyone can agree that Jay Cutler and the Chicago Bears endured a rather inauspicious start to the 2012 NFL season during Week 1 against the Indianapolis Colts. Mike Tice apparently scripted the first 10 plays for the offense during the home opener. It was a suckfest. The comedy of errors started with Cutler getting sacked, Gabe Carmini getting called for a false start, Matt Forte going nowhere on a run and Roberto Garza tossing a worm burner of a shotgun snap to Jay on 3rd and 21 from five-yard line. As we all know, things actually got worse from that point.

On the next offensive play after the punt from the opening series -- a 1st and 10 from the three-yard-line forced by great punt coverage from the Colts -- Cutler aimed a pass for Forte in the flat that was intercepted by former Mary Hardin-Baylor (???) star linebacker Jerrell Freeman and walked into the endzone to put Indianapolis up 6-0. That play is the low point of the Bears' season so far, and it isn't even a contest (at least the 34-7 run that followed that debacle served to ease our collective pain).

The interesting thing is that it was a well-designed play where the Bears got the exact matchup they wanted and came tantalizingly close to producing a 97-yard touchdown pass from Cutler to Forte. The Bears flexed out tight end Kyle Adams, got the Colts to shift their strong safety into the box and got a one-on-one matchup between their star running back and a linebacker making his NFL debut. Three things went wrong:

  1. Brandon Marshall couldn't quite get the right depth on his rub route (read: pick play) to disrupt the angle of Freeman and create space for the throw.
  2. Jay Cutler didn't utilize the open space behind the defense and failed to lead Forte down the field by putting more air under the ball.
  3. Roberto Gazra got blown up by nose tackle Antonio Johnson, who busted into the backfield on the three-step drop and probably forced Jay to rush the throw from the shadow of his own goalposts.

I've made a resolution to go beyond the talk and try to actually show you what happened on various Bears plays throughout the season using All-22 coaches' film (learn more here). Now let's take a look at what happened on that ugly pick-6 from Jay Cutler and the Chicago Bears offense from Week 1: