Bears' Marshall comes to Cutler's defense
LAKE FOREST – Wearing a T-shirt that said, “God Is Awesome,” Brandon Marshall arrived to the Halas Hall media room in a good mood Wednesday.
Marshall smiled after a flurry of hard questions about Bears quarterback Jay Cutler.
“I think this is what makes this Chicago market great,” Marshall said. “I’m learning a lot about you guys. I mean, it’s Week 2, and we’re talking about drafting another quarterback or something?”
Although some former NFL players and at least one player in the Bears locker room took exception to Cutler’s antics Thursday in Green Bay, Marshall said he appreciated his quarterback’s demeanor on and off of the field. Cutler drew national attention for bumping left tackle J’Marcus Webb on the sideline, and he also screamed at Marshall for not lining up correctly for a play in the first half Thursday.
“When Jay is not fiery, that’s when I’m going to have a problem,” Marshall said. “I’m going to want to play with a different quarterback. That’s the reason I wanted to be here. That’s the guy I wanted to play for.”
Marshall said outside criticism against Cutler was based on perceptions.
“[It’s] because of the way he approaches the game,” Marshall said. “It’s different than Tom Brady, it’s different than Peyton Manning. Even in our personal life, when I go out with Jay, Jay doesn’t love the attention. He doesn’t. He doesn’t want to be the guy up front. He just wants to come to work and do his job. He really loves this game.”
Long wait: Chilo Rachal is eager to start his first game since Sept. 25, 2011, when he was replaced by Adam Snyder on the San Francisco 49ers’ offensive line.
“I’m hungry,” said Rachal, who joined the Bears in April. “Beyond hungry.”
Rachal (6-foot-5, 323 pounds) started 38 games in four seasons with San Francisco. He will replace Bears left guard Chris Spencer, who lost his starting job after back-to-back disappointing performances against Indianapolis and Green Bay.
Sweet memories: Rams coach Jeff Fisher said one memory stood out above the rest when asked about his playing career with the Bears from 1981-85.
“The highlight of my career was being on that sideline and watching Walter Payton carry the football,” Fisher said. “Just to be able to be a teammate of his. All of things that were included in those five years was a lasting memory, and one that I get excited [about] when young running backs or players want to know about him.”
Fisher, who played defensive back, appeared in 49 games with the Bears after they selected him in the seventh round of the 1981 NFL Draft. He spent the 1985 season on injured reserve but helped then-coordinator Buddy Ryan with the defense.
Bears bits: Bears coach Lovie Smith was asked how he dealt with D.J. Moore after he publicly criticized Cutler on Monday. “I talk to our players, but I don’t tell them what to say,” Smith said. … Defensive end Julius Peppers did not practice because of a sore foot, Smith said, but he is expected to return to practice today.