Marek Makowski

Quitter. Coward. Crybaby.

Lovable Jay Cutler inherited these brutal nicknames after he was criticized in January for “being a sissy” because he spent half of the NFC championship game on the sidelines. Now, he’s being criticized for quitting on his offensive line.

Guys, it’s time to lay off.

Cutler spent the second half of last season’s NFC championship game on the sidelines because of a Grade II MCL tear in his knee, not because of his lack of manliness. Recently, he’s taken some flak for sitting away from the rest of the team at the end of the Week 2 loss against New Orleans. I bet all of us would be frustrated if our O-line gave up five sacks—five!—in the last 10 minutes of the game.

Sure, Cutler throws off his back foot, throws across his body and holds onto the ball too long. But, he’s human. A person can’t play football with a torn MCL. A person can’t keep their cool after getting thrown to the ground by 300-pound monsters five times in 10 minutes. A person can’t complete every one of 45 pass attempts, a ridiculous number of throws called by offensive coordinator Mike Martz. A person can’t handle unreasonable criticism.

Give the guy a break.

Game of the Week
Prep football: Naperville Central vs. Glenbard North
7:30 p.m. Friday

These two top-40 football teams in the state clash in another classic Friday-night matchup. Central’s defense has put up all shutouts throughout September.

Other matchups
Crystal Lake South vs. Prairie Ridge, 7:15 p.m. Friday

King vs. Julian (at Gately), 3:30 p.m. Friday

Simeon vs. Dunbar (at Gately), 7 p.m. Friday

Mount Carmel at Loyola, 1:30 p.m. Saturday


Winners & Losers
Winner: The Arizona Diamondbacks, who upset the division favorite San Francisco Giants and clinched their first division title in four years. It’s nice to see a Cinderella break into the playoffs.

Loser: New York Giants safety Deon Grant, who faked an injury during the G-men’s Week 2 game against St. Louis. Let’s leave the flopping to soccer and basketball.

“I actually had dinner with the agent to pretend that we were actually involved and drive the price up.”

—Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman about his scheme to raise Boston’s price for outfielder Carl Crawford last offseason, according to

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About The Mash

The Mash is the Chicago Tribune's newspaper and website written for teens, by teens. The paper is distributed for free every other Thursday at Chicago-area high schools and is written largely by high school students.

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