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Analysts say Bears QB Jay Cutler needs attitude adjustment

Bears quarterback Jay Cutler’s demeanor against Packers was topic discussiSunday ‘‘The NFL Today.’’ | AP

Bears quarterback Jay Cutler’s demeanor against the Packers was a topic of discussion Sunday on ‘‘The NFL Today.’’ | AP

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Updated: October 18, 2012 6:25AM



Former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Bill Cowher, an analyst on CBS’ ‘‘The NFL Today,’’ said Jay Cutler is going to have to ‘‘change his ways’’ or the Bears will have to consider changing quarterbacks if they don’t make the playoffs.

Responding to host James Brown’s assessment Sunday that Cutler ‘‘displayed questionable demeanor as the leader of the team,’’ Cowher said: ‘‘I think it’s a problem. The guy’s got a strong arm, there is no question about that. He’s had some protection issues. I know there’s been some questionable [play]-calling. But they brought players in to help this guy win a championship, and he’s going to [have to] prove to be more accountable, not sensationalize every little mistake with his antics and body language.

‘‘He’s a good quarterback. But if he does not change his ways and this team does not go to the playoffs, they have to consider changing. He has to change.’’

Former Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino, also an analyst on ‘‘The NFL Today,’’ echoed those sentiments.

‘‘You have to lead by example,’’ said Marino, a Hall of Famer. ‘‘He has a great arm, but it’s not just all about throwing a fastball. You’ve got to learn to play the position.’’

Bouncing back

Despite his four-interception debacle Thursday against the Green Bay Packers, Cutler figures to bounce back Sunday against the St. Louis Rams.

After the six games with the Bears in which a healthy Cutler has had a passer rating below 50, he has responded with a rating of 99.6 or higher in his next outing five times. In those games, he has a combined 14 touchdowns and four interceptions in victories against the Pittsburgh Steelers (104.7) and Minnesota Vikings (108.4) in 2009 and the Vikings (106.6) and Seattle Seahawks (111.3 in the playoffs) in 2010 and in a loss to the Detroit Lions (99.6) last season.

Rams up next

The game Sunday against the Rams (1-1) at Soldier Field might be a bigger challenge than expected after quarterback Sam Bradford led them to a 31-28 victory Sunday against the Washington Redskins. Bradford, whose passer rating dropped from 76.5 as a rookie in 2010 to 70.5 last season, has had back-to-back 100-plus games against the Lions (105.1) and Redskins (117.6).

With the Rams missing starting center Scott Wells (broken foot) and starting left tackle Rodger Saffold (neck), Bradford was 26-for-35 for 310 yards, three touchdowns and one interception against the Redskins.



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