Today, in "Athletes - they're just like us!", the biggest reason that Jay Cutler didn't sign up for the New York Jets Tank-A-Palooza Tour 2017 was the same reason a lot of us don't get to go to as many music festivals as we want to.
A packed calendar.
The Jets have already cut, said they’re eventually going to cut, or said “please trade us anything, anything at all, seriously, anything” for just about every player over age 30 on their roster, but when free agency started back in March, New York was a popular guess for where Jay Cutler would end up and most likely finish his career, assuming Gang Green could pony up enough cash. As it turns out, they actually were interested in Jay slinging the rock, they just couldn’t find a time for Cutler to meet up with the Jets brass to talk seriously about it.
Read that again real quick. The Jets and Cutler couldn’t make their schedules work for a meeting about possibly playing the most important position in football, so Mike Maccagnan and the guys were like “Screw it, we’ll figure something else out”.
Here’s Pro Football Talk (who got their story from Adam Schefter’s podcast):
“During an appearance on a podcast with Adam Schefter of ESPN, Cutler said that the Jets reached out to him shortly after the Bears cut him loose. Cutler said he wasn’t sure if he wanted to keep playing, so nothing materialized right away. They stayed in touch, but had a hard time finding a date that worked for a visit and it ultimately became a moot issue when the Jets signed Josh McCown.
“The stars didn’t really align for me to get out there,” Cutler said. “By the time I was scheduled to get out there, my buddy Josh had taken a visit and they worked something out with him. It all worked out. I’m happy for him.”
The “Josh” in the story, obviously, is Josh McCown, who’s played for enough teams that it’s probably easier to list who he hasn’t played for, and is most recently virally famous for getting hit so hard on a scramble play that he helicoptored approximately 500 degrees (by my math). McCown’s replacement-level at best, and at worst, he’s one of us playing our fifth game of dizzy bat.
Ah, just watch it again, you know you want to.
That’s the dude! Josh McCown, that dude, is who they decided to go with, all because Jay couldn’t get to New York for a meeting as fast as they wanted him to. In other words, they were so worried about missing out on Josh McCown Watch 2017 that they told Cutler not to bother coming in and gave McCown $6,000,000.00 for a year’s worth of doing...whatever it is that he does.
On the other hand, if the goal is to bottom out in 2017 and then go for USC’s Sam Darnold or whatever, McCown sure fits the bill better than Cutler, so maybe that’s been the plan all along.
Gotta say, though, this does take some of the excitement out of the Jets-Patriots games coming up this year. Boat-racing the Jets is always a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon, but knowing that they’re more than likely in full “Last two weeks, screw it!” mode kind of takes a bit of the schadenfreude out of it.