Discussing a contract with quarterback Jay Cutler was the first item on the to-do list this offseason for the Chicago Bears. Only four days after the gut-wrenching loss to the Packers, that item can now receive a big, bold checkmark.
General Manager Phil Emery announced today at Halas Hall that Cutler and the organization agreed to a seven-year deal. The first three years of his deal average $18 million per season, FoxSports.com's Alex Marvez reported.
Emery had nothing but good things to say about the franchise signal-caller.
"After the first three games, I knew it was going in the right direction," he said. Emery also called Cutler a "demonstrated winner." He's right, unless the opponent in question is the Packers which Cutler posts a dismal 1-9 all-time record against.
The five-year Bear threw for 2,621 yards, 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 11 games.
Underneath all the hype of Cutler's long-term decision, two other Bears were extended. Cornerback Tim Jennings and guard Matt Slauson both signed four-year deals with the team.
Emery said Jennings' deal was about "rewarding excellence." Jennings started all 16 contests this season and finished with 57 tackles and four interceptions, two of which were brought to the house for touchdowns.
Tim Jennings on Twitter (@HennOrJenn26) "The butterflies are starting to take affect!!! So excited about the new year and to be a Bear for another 4 years!! GodIsAmazing"
As for Slauson, Emery said he was a "key part" of the unit's drastic improvement in 2013. The move will retain a piece of the revamped offensive line that led to the Bears' second-ranked offense in points scored per game.
Don't sit down yet, folks. We're only in Week 1 of the offseason.