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Cutler back, but can Bears protect him?

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Dan Parr

dparr@pfwmedia.com
Associate editor

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Posted Oct. 13, 2010 @ 6:25 p.m. ET
By Dan Parr

Each Wednesday throughout the season we'll identify one player, coach or area of the team that is most under the microscope. This week, all those responsible for protecting QB Jay Cutler get the nod.

I'm not sure if a doctor would have put it quite the same way, but Jay Cutler did a decent job of summing up the sensitive situation he's facing as he returns from a Week Four concussion.

It came while he was discussing how hard it was to watch from the sideline last week.

"Those second concussions are the ones that can get real tricky," he said.

The Bears may have shuffled the pieces on their starting offensive line again this week, moving Chris Williams from tackle to guard, but their objective hasn't changed. They need to do a much better job of meeting the challenge of keeping Cutler from getting his head knocked into the ground over and over again. The Bears also need some of these O-linemen to step up so there is more consistency in the starting lineup.

The next protection breakdown could lead to the hit that sidelines Cutler for more than just one game, and the Bears can't afford to be without him for very long.

Offensive coordinator Mike Martz, offensive line coach Mike Tice, the offensive line and any other player with a blocking assignment will all have to do a better job in order to keep the Bears' most valuable player from taking hits.

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