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Even if you only casually follow the NFL, it’s been impossible to avoid Jay Cutler over the last two weeks, as the Bears have been featured in primetime twice. They were on Sunday Night Football against the 49ers back on Sept. 14, and they were most recently on Monday Night Football against the Jets (winning both games). As a lifelong Bears fan and a resident of Chicago for more than 20 years, I’ve followed Cutler closely since he was traded from Denver. It was a big moment for the city. The only quarterback anyone remembers in Chicago is Jim McMahon (another guy who was TFTC), so to actually have a “franchise quarterback” was a big change.
I bought a Cutler jersey on day one and have supported him through all the ups and downs. It hasn’t been easy these past five seasons, but Cutler also hasn’t gotten a lot of help from players, coaches, or management until now. The Bears fired their general manager in 2012, gutted their coaching staff in 2013, traded and drafted offensive talent these last two years, and finally built a team that didn’t treat the offense like the third unit behind defense and special teams.
The changes are paying off and Cutler is second in the league in touchdowns, while the Bears just won back-to-back away games in primetime. As the resident Chicagoan at TFM, I felt it was time to revisit one of our favorite quarterbacks on this site. I propose to once and for all settle the debate of who is the frattest quarterback in the NFL. My choice: Jay Cutler from Santa Claus, Indiana.
In order to support my position, I did an internet search to see if anyone had tried to rank football players by level of frat before. BuzzFeed actually made a list back in 2012, called “The Frattiest Quarterbacks in the NFL.” The site ranked Cutler as number eight. How do we know this list is a joke? Well, for one, BuzzFeed used the word “frattiest.” Secondly, the list ranked him eighth behind guys like Peyton Manning (Seriously? Have you seen him dance to “Rocky Top”?) and Ben Roethlisberger (I mean, come on, everyone knows rape is NF). Cutler has been featured multiple times on this site over the years, and when he was still using Twitter, he followed @TotalFratMove. But in case you still don’t believe me, let’s take a look at just how frat Jay really is.
1. He reads the TFM book.
2. He rocks the frat swoop.
3. He went to Vanderbilt and may have been in a fraternity.
Vanderbilt is in the SEC, which everyone knows is frat. There are conflicting reports as to whether Cutler was actually in a fraternity or not (for once, the internet has let us all down). I, for one, choose to believe that Cutler was actually in a fraternity, but if not, he was probably at least an honorary member. Either way, for a professional athlete, fratness is one part actual Greek affiliation and nine parts how you act. Cutler has the other nine parts in spades.
4. He is currently dominating life.
Everyone knows that members of fraternities are statistically more likely to succeed in life, so in order to be the frattest of anything, you have to be successful. Jay has had an up and down career in the NFL, but this is his first year as a Chicago Bear where he will be playing in the same offense for two years in a row. That offense was the second highest scoring offense in the league last year, getting a lot of help from the best wide receiver duo in the league (Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery), one of the five best running backs in the league (Matt Forte), and one of the best pass catching tight ends (Martellus Bennett). This offense is built to put up points, and so far this season, they’ve lived up to expectations. Cutler is second in the league with eight touchdowns in three games. Off the field, he’s married to Kristin Cavallari who just gave birth to their second child. More on this in a moment.
5. He is the living embodiment of TFTC.
I probably could have written an entire column just on Cutler’s TFTC-ness. It is his most defining characteristic. From making faces on the field to annoyed interview answers to screaming “fuck him” about then offensive coordinator Mike Martz, Cutler has shown an incredible ability to give zero fucks at all times.
Here he can be seen immediately getting off the bench when Mike Tice (another one of his offensive coordinators) tries to come and talk to him:
Even when a referee knocks off his helmet, Cutler just catches it behind his back and walks off like nothing happened (making a vintage Cutler face in the process).
But the one event that encapsulates everything that makes Cutler TFTC was covered on TFM a couple years ago. Cutler was drunk at a bar during the offseason, taking a piss at a urinal. A Bears fan and former Vanderbilt graduate happened to saddle on up next to Cutler at the adjacent urinal. Mid-stream, he turns to Jay and says, “Hey, I’m a huge fan, also went to Vanderbilt.” At this point, Cutler must have vaguely noticed someone speaking in his general direction, and in order to make sure whatever was happening ceased to happen, Cutler reared his head back and bellowed, “DOOOOOONNNNN’TTTTTT CAAAAAAARRRRRRREEEEEEEE.” Zero. Fucks. Given. Also, if this picture doesn’t scream TFTC, then I clearly don’t understand the acronym.
6. He got engaged to Kristin Cavallari, demoted her to slampiece status, got her pregnant, and then got re-engaged by mailing her the engagement ring. #TFM
Cutler convinced an incredibly hot and famous female to marry him. He then dumped her, accidentally (?) impregnated her, and then begrudgingly got engaged again when he realized the whole kid thing was actually happening (note: not sure on the timing of all of this, but in my head the pregnancy happened before the re-engagement). Only he was so pissed off about the whole affair that he mailed her the ring via UPS rather than re-proposing in some romantic gesture. Kristin later refuted this claim on Twitter, but can’t you just imagine the text Jay sent her? “Hey babe, so uh with the baby on the way, I guess we have to give this whole marriage thing another try. I’ve got your old ring right here. Is it cool if I just mail it to you?”
7. He has a bromance going with teammate Brandon Marshall.
You know what they say, it’s not gay if it’s brotherhood. In addition to the above GIF, there is a video that I can’t embed, but it’s well worth the watch. This is the press conference after the Niners game. It’s vintage Cutler. He spends the first few seconds texting while Marshall answers questions, because he doesn’t give a fuck about some press conference. He then pets Marshall’s shoulder, because bromance. Finally, he makes three or four vintage Cutler faces showing pure indifference at the proceedings set out before him.
8. Cutler was Manzieling before Manziel even knew it was a thing.
The current king of TFM is Johnny Manziel. If it wasn’t for wife and child beating in the NFL, we might still be talking about Manziel flicking off the Washington bench. According to the above picture, Manziel learned from the best. Not only is Jay Manzieling, but he’s doing so walking around Chicago in sweatpants and a T-shirt while Kristin is next to him trying to look cute while walking her tiny dog. Kristin was likely trying to pose for the paparazzi while Jay couldn’t be further away from giving a fuck about walking her dog or the paparazzi taking his photo. The best part is that there are three or four more of these pictures from the same day with Jay flicking off photographers in different poses. He must have been having a bad day. Maybe this was the day he found out Kristin was pregnant and that his bachelor days were over.
9. He voted for Romney.
10. He is absolutely a guy you would want to have your back in a fight.
For some bizarre reason, most of America thinks Cutler is a pussy. This is likely because he came out of the NFC Championship a few years ago with a sprained MCL and all the armchair quarterbacks in America thought he should have played. For those of us who actually watched the Bears that entire season, we saw Cutler get sacked 52 times (the most in the NFL) and pop back up from each one, only missing one game because of a concussion. Below is Jay getting obliterated by the 49ers right before the half last weekend. He got right back up and had one of the best games of his career.
Here’s Jay giving zero fucks about a Pittsburgh Steeler defensive player getting in his way. Cutler doesn’t slide. Sliding is for pussies. I’ll take Cutler in a fight any day.
11. He has become a bit of a pop culture icon via memes, YouTube videos, and television appearances.
I’m not sure that memes are inherently frat, but something about the way Cutler gets memed just says “frat” to me, largely because most of them deal with being TFTC. Corporate Cutler, Corporate Cutler Holiday Edition, Smoking Jay Cutler, and the Jay Cutler Meme Generator are just a few of the internet memes centered on Cutler. He’s also had two songs written about him, one begging him to come back from injury and one teaching us all how to Cutty. He also appeared alongside his wife on an episode of “The League” (shameless plug, if you aren’t reading my recaps of “The League” over on PGP, you are missing out). My favorite parody, though, is the @NotJayCutler Twitter account. I think it is one of the best parody accounts on the internet, and though he has sadly gone quiet recently, in his heyday, he was even getting Kristin Cavallari to engage with him on Twitter. Example tweets below:
Oh snap, Jager for Youth is tonight? RT @KristinCav Hey Chicago…who is coming to Jay’s charity event tonight? See u guys there!
— NotJayCutler (@NotJayCutler) July 12, 2012
That was the kind of touchdown pass that gets a sorority girl pregnant.
— NotJayCutler (@NotJayCutler) December 30, 2012
I didn’t realize Tim Tebow was in. Another great job by the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
— NotJayCutler (@NotJayCutler) August 30, 2013
Turnover isn’t just something I yell during sex.
— NotJayCutler (@NotJayCutler) October 28, 2012
Whatever, I broke Johnny Unitas’ record for slaying pussy.
— NotJayCutler (@NotJayCutler) October 8, 2012
Thought my house was haunted. Totally forgot that there’s a baby living here now.
— NotJayCutler (@NotJayCutler) August 16, 2012
12. He created shirts based on a hashtag started by fans, #CuttyDoesIt, and sold them on his official website with the money going to charity.
Jay’s fans on Twitter basically created the equivalent of #TFM, but for Cutler specifically. People would tweet out sayings, such as “Go fuck Matt Stafford’s girlfriend #CuttyDoesIt.” Cutler saw what was happening, and being the good frat boy he is, he saw an opportunity for philanthropy. He sold shirts with the hashtag on his site and donated all the money to diabetes research.
13. Speaking of diabetes, Cutler was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 25 and is still playing in the NFL.
I happen to have a bit of personal experience with type 1 diabetes, as my younger brother was diagnosed with the disease at the age of 11 and also played college football. Diabetes is a hard enough disease to deal with at the age of 11, but it’s exponentially harder mentally at the age of 25. Jay was a full-blown adult. He had to completely change his lifestyle while continuing to play professional football. Type 1 diabetes is a very manageable disease, but things like working out and not sleeping can completely fuck with your blood sugar and cause you to crash, and even potentially kill you. Jay’s taken the whole thing in stride and started dedicating his time and money to diabetes research and outreach, because philanthropy. Back in high school, my brother had the opportunity to spend half a day with Jay and other juvenile diabetics at the University of Chicago. According to my brother, despite the TFTC façade, this is a guy who really does care, and, at the end of the day, that may be the most frat thing about him. .