With all of the Travis Henry commotion and the big game coming up, I’ve been watching the blogosphere for Broncos stories. I stumbled across one of the most interesting blogs that I’ve seen in a while – Let Plummer Play. Believe it or not, there are people out there that believe that Plummer shouldn’t have been benched after his deplorable performance last season. They have some kind of man-crush on Jake Plummer, and have Jay Cutler on their dartboard, taking shot after shot at him. They’re still bitter at Shanahan for benching Plummer and his ultimate retirement rather than going to play in Tampa Bay. I’m not sure if the authors are even Broncos fans but simply Jake Plummer fans.
Look, Plummer is what he is. He’s an athletic quarterback who brought the Broncos a lot of success in the first few years, but wasn’t able to take them over the playoff hump. Plummer had amazing ability to scramble and make some pretty impressive plays. At the same time, there were quite a few games that Plummer cost the team with stupid mistakes and turn-overs at the worst possible times. Plummer apologists are quick to defend the Broncos were 39-15 under him, but I personally believe that the Broncos won some of those games despite bad play by Plummer. Plummer wasn’t John Elway and anyone outside of Denver will always criticize fans for unfairly comparing the current QB to Elway. There’s validity to that, but there’s more to it than just not being Elway. For the longest time the Broncos were known as a 4th Quarter team: don’t count them out just yet if they’ve fallen behind – because they’ll rally in the 4th quarter and at least make it interesting. Under Plummer, that switched 180 degrees: the Broncos always started strong out the gate, then always fizzled in the second half. I think it’s fair to attribute some of that to Plummer.
Here’s what Cutler offers: he’s got a strong arm that darts the ball right in where it needs to go, he has the ability to throw the long ball and stretch the field, and most importantly he doesn’t screw up our 4th quarter chances. All QB’s will have bad plays here and there (i.e. the Colts game), but ultimately Cutler hasn’t put us in a position to lose these games. I remember watching the first game that Cutler started against Seattle on Sunday Night Football. The Broncos ultimately lost that close game, but I remember Cutler being able to storm down the field to tie the game. It was the defense in that game that ultimately let the Seahawks do the same and score the winning field goal. Cutler got us the score when we needed it, and we weren’t able to get that from Plummer before he got benched.