The funny thing about the shots Jay Cutler took from critics when he couldn't play in the second half of the Bears' loss in the NFC championship game three seasons ago is that he's one of the toughest quarterbacks in the game.
If more proof was needed, Cutler provided it Thursday.
Cutler was supposed to miss at least four weeks with a torn groin injury. He was back at practice two-and-a-half weeks later.
— Jeff Dickerson (@ESPNChiBears) November 7, 2013
That's remarkable. Cutler will still need to be cleared before he can play Sunday, but he obviously knows what this week's game means for the Bears.
Chicago, Green Bay and Detroit are all tied for first place in the NFC North at 5-3, and the Packers will be without quarterback Aaron Rodgers for a few weeks because of a broken collarbone. The race is wide open. Chicago can't afford a home loss to Detroit, because it lost to the Lions earlier this year and Detroit would have a one-game lead and the tiebreaker with a victory this week.
The Bears still might have to go with backup Josh McCown on Sunday, although McCown has played well since Cutler suffered the injury on Oct. 20 at Washington. But Cutler undoubtedly wants to make it back to play with first place in the division on the line. The fact that he's got a shot at returning so soon is impressive.
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