COMMENTARY | Apparently, Jay Cutler sought out a second opinion regarding the time frame on his return from the torn groin muscle he sustained in Week 7. And great news Bears fans, Cutler's second opinion seems to think Chicago's QB will be back under center in just two weeks. Unfortunately, that second opinion came from the unlicensed medical practice of Dr. Brandon Marshall Esquire.
"I predict Jay Cutler will be back in two weeks," Marshall said." "They say four to six, but we have the right people around Jay right now. So we'll get it done. Two weeks!"
So that's a relief. Thanks to the Bears having a bye this week, Marshall's shotgun diagnosis will see Cutler back on the field after only missing one game. Cutler would miss the Bears' Monday-night showdown with the Green Bay Packers, but be able to help Chicago seek revenge against the Detroit Lions for their Week 4 loss earlier this season.
Of course, Marshall's medical opinion runs directly counter to what the Bears have been saying.
"I'm going to tell you it's a minimum of four weeks and from there it will be week to week," Bears' GM Phil Emery said. "We've researched the injury. I'm telling you right from our research, it's a minimum of four weeks and from there it varies. For us it's going to be week to week from there."
While two weeks is a very optimistic schedule for Cutler to come back, Marshall's opinion has seemed to make everyone gloss over what he was really trying to accomplish Thursday. Marshall's comments came when he was a guest on the MSNBC show "Andrea Mitchell Reports." The Bears' Pro Bowl wide receiver went on the program to discuss the need for mental health reform, but instead, he sent the news cycle reeling from his overzealous prognosis of his injured quarterback.
Marshall was diagnosed with borderline bipolar disorder in 2011 and has since started the Brandon Marshall Foundation to help raise awareness about mental illness.
Marshall made headlines in Week 6 when he was fined $10,500 by the NFL for wearing custom-made lime green cleats during the Bears' Thursday night game against the New York Giants. The gaudy footwear was used as a way to bring attention to Marshall's cause. He parlayed his public fine into a platform to speak more on the issue.
"The money the league will fine me is nothing compared to the awareness raised tonight," Marshall wrote via Twitter.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, 26.2 percent of Americans age 18 and older suffer from some type of diagnosable mental disorder in a given year. The NIMH cites mental disorders as the leading cause of disability in the United States and Canada.
Marshall matched the NFL's fine by donating an additional $10,500 to the charity and then auctioned off his lime green shoes with the proceeds also going to his foundation.
As for Marshall's day job, he will be catching passes from backup QB Josh McCown until Cutler is healthy enough to return - whenever that may be. McCown took over for Cutler in Week 7 and threw for 204 yards and one touchdown in the Bears' 45-41 loss to the Washington Redskins.
Dalton Russell has covered the Chicago Bears in print and online media since 1998. He lives just outside the shadow of the iconic architecture of Soldier Field.
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