Jay Cutler is not a likeable fellow. But no one deserves this.
Dinged with an undisclosed knee injury during Sunday’s NFC championship game against the Packers, the Bears’ coaching staff pulled their fiery yet controversial starter for Todd Collins.
And ridiculousness ensued.
Following the injury (which the Fox announcers handled POORLY), Cutler was seen sulking on the sidelines… sitting alone on the bench… riding a stationary bike.
That’s when the bloodbath by Bears fans, Cutler-haters and even current and former NFL players began on Twitter, where the break-kneck speed of 140 characters and no common-sense filter played out for all to see.
I get that Twitter can be a cesspool, no matter the topic. But many of these were Bears fans (presumably) who were throwing Cutler – torn knee ligaments and all – under the bus. DURING the game!
Here’s just a PG-rated sampling of the Twitter nonsense:
These were tweets DURING the game. The Packers had not finished off the Bears until late in the fourth quarter. With third-string QB Caleb Hanie leading the way, the Bears came ever-close to knotting the game up at 21.
Following the loss, though, Bears fans took their anger from Twitter to the parking lots surrounding Soldier Field.
Yes, they actually burned Jay Cutler jerseys – presumably the ones they wore into the game. Above is a picture of one such incident – shared on Twitter.
Bears fans quickly forgot why their team was even playing that day. Jay Cutler (and a pretty stout defense) led them to the NFC North title and a No. 2 seed. It was Cutler’s ability to complete passes to a less-than-stellar receiving corps that helped the Bears reach the playoffs.
Still, Jason Whitlock, current and former NFL stars, sports columnists and commentators piled on, and continue to do so despite the knowledge that Cutler tore his MCL and that he was not cleared to play by his coach and team medical staff.
So, I say – enough.
Twitter will continue to be a junkyard that’s 90 percent garbage. With so many users, that’s inevitable. But sports fans don’t need to stoop to the that level.
It’s time for some sports civility on Twitter. If you see it, call these “fans” out on it. Don’t pile on. Unfollow. Block.
Sure, Jay Cutler is easy to hate on. But this time, he didn’t deserve it. And this kind of nonsense has no place in sports – or social media.
Thanks for being a fan.