With all the speculation about Jay Cutler possibly being traded to the Vikings, among other franchises, it begs the question: Would Cutler even be a good fit in Minnesota?
Some would point out that Brad Childress' offense, of choice doesn't require a gunslinger-type QB. Also, the Vikings have one of the best running backs in the league and that Peterson's stats would decline if the passing game suddenly became potent at all.
If Peterson's carries don't diminish with a QB like Cutler on board, could Cutler handle the diminished passing attempts?
I'll argue that offensive yards or points are not finite. Teams that can move the ball and score points tend to win most of their games and that is the point of all of this, right?
So if Cutler were to somehow end up in Minnesota, (for something more long term than ice fishing) I don't think it would be Cutler or Peterson that would have to adjust. It would be Childress.
There are good examples of teams which sacrificed neither rushing yards, passing yards, offensive points, or defensive stinginess. Couldn't the Vikings join that group of teams, rather than seemingly pick whether or not they will be defined by this or that?
Take the New York Giants for example. In four years as a full time starter, Eli Manning has thrown for at least 3,200 yards, 21 TD, and won a Super Bowl.
In his first season as starter, his RB (Tiki Barber) ran for 1,860 yards and nine TD, earning All-Pro honors. The next year Barber (Pro Bowl) had 1,662 and five TD while Brandon Jacobs ran the goal line stuff and added 423 and nine TD.
The next season, a committee of Jacobs, Derrick Ward and Reuben Droughns had 1,886 yards, 13 TD and collected Super Bowl rings. Last season, Jacobs and Ward combined for 2,114 yards and 14 TD.
What, two 1,000 yard rushers and still the QB throws for 3,228 yards and 21 TD? As Ralph Wiggum of the Simpsons would say "that's unpossible".
But it isn't.
Despite all of the offensive production, each of those seasons also saw the Giants' defense perform at the worst, solidly and at best, spectacularly.
How about the case of the San Diego Chargers with Philip Rivers as starter? In his first season (2006) he threw for 3,388 yards, 22 TD, nine interceptions, and made the Pro Bowl.
Ladanian Tomlinson pitched in 1,815 yards, 28 TD and was named All-Pro. The Chargers had the best defense in the league and went 14-2 before losing to the Patriots by three points...and Marty Schottenheimer was the freaking coach for God's sake!
Childress, babe, if Marty can do it, so can you.
The point I'm trying to make is that, there is room for a passing game in Minnesota if Brad Childress can man up and decide to be a scorer of points, rather than be fearful of scoring on something other than miraculous, Peterson, marathon runs.
If winning and retaining his position is more important than attempting to prove that his "system" is pure brilliance and therefore doesn't need changing, then Cutler would not only be able to handle playing in Minnesota, they would be perfect for each other.
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