The Washington Post

Jay Cutler Cutler could be a late-round steal in fantasy football

(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler set a career-high in passer rating (89.2) behind a 63.1 percent completion percentage, plus 2,621 yards with 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 11 games last season.He has already become the Bears’ all-time leader in completions (1,258) completions, attempts (2,090), and yards (14,913) after just five years in the Windy City.

“Going into my ninth year, I think this is only the second or third time I’ve been in an offense multiple years,” Cutler said. “We’re still in the learning process, but guys have much more familiarity with what the concepts are and the formations and everything, so that’s definitely going to be a help; less thinking and able to go fast.”

A faster offense could be an even bigger boost to his fantasy numbers this season. According to Pro Football Focus, when Cutler sat in the pocket 2.5 seconds or less, he had a quarterback rating of 99.2, eighth best in the league among QBs who took at least half their team’s snaps. However, only 46.5 percent of his snaps (20 out of 27 QBs) had that quick a release.

Also adding to Cutler’s value is the Bears will face the least blitz-heavy schedule (28.7 percent) in the NFL based on 2013 results. That could change now that Mike Zimmer has taken over in Minnesota, but Cutler still has one of the best receiving corps in the NFL to pass to in Alshon Jeffrey and Brandon Marshall, who combined for 189 catches, 2,716 receiving yards and 19 touchdowns last year.

“I’m not the type of person that brags a lot about anything, but I feel that last year, what we did, we were at the top of the list as the two best receivers,” wideout Jeffery said. “But that was last year. This year we have to set our goal and try our best to do the same thing we did last year, if not better.”

Based on 1152 mock drafts conducted between July 11, 2014 and July 14, 2014, Cutler is being targeted in the ninth round, on average, as the 13th QB taken.

Average draft position of Jay Culter

There is a good bet Cutler could provide QB1 value with a top 10 performance in the coming season.

Neil Greenberg analyzes advanced sports statistics for the Fancy Stats blog and prefers to be called a geek rather than a nerd.



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