The big no-news story the last couple of days has, of course, revolved around the Jay Cutler saga. Drew Rosenhous is master of the player "spectacle" -- but Bus Cook is the grand master of the "saga". Must have been all those years working with Brett Favre.
For those of you living on another planet, Jay Cutler isn't really thrilled with Josh McDaniels and Denver's new GM. Make that totally hosed off. While there are a lot of calls of "whiny momma's boy" flying around about Cutler, every time I see McDaniels I can't help but think I'm listening to a shady car salesman tell me how that lil ol granny only drove this car to church on Sundays...
When the front office is making the agents look like the straight-up, forthright fellow...well, let's just say maybe Cutler was right to be ticked.
Can you see Detroit trying to trade away Cutler at this point? Indy trade Manning? Pitt trade Big Ben? Even listening?
Where there's smoke, there's something making it (most likely fire or a smoke bomb). Whichever it was, there was plenty of smoke coming out of Denver writing a clear signal across the NFL sky that they were open to entertaining offers...
Rookie GM, Rookie Coach... Rookie mistake thinking it would stay quiet. Today they made a lame excuse that they would think of trading him now (after he has demanded it and not shown up to OTA's after two conciliatory meetings were anything but...) but only for the right players -- they don't want draft picks.
Oh come on! They are desperately trying to get control of a situation that has been totally out of their control at a minimum the last 48 hours. They may show him the money and get him to stay, but 5 will get you 20 he's not a Bronco in 2009.
But will he be a Lion?
Denver's defense was almost as bad as Detroit's last year, and it was Cutler slinging the ball to Royal (who saved my fantasy season) and Marshall with whoever the Bronco's signed off the street that week running the ball that got Denver the wins it did...
Their offense was great...Defense got Shannahan fired.
So Cutler can get it done. He would have CJ as a target, a huge plus when trying to entice a QB. He would also have near deity status in Detroit so stroking the ego, no problem.
What would Detroit give for him? I have heard dozens of scenarios -- from the absurd to the pretty reasonable. A reworked deal will have to be part of any trade, and the Lions have a good relationship with Bus Cook (who is also CJ's agent) and plenty of cap space for a real QB -- especially since they could get another 5 mil back by dumping Culpepper if they land Cutler and keeping Stanton as the backup. Or reworking C-Pepps deal again.
But what would it cost?
Not too many players Detroit would want to give up that Denver would want. Broncos are switching to a 3-4 defensive scheme, and any 3-4 type guys the Lions have (Avril) are some of the few they want to build around. Offensively, I can't think of anyone the Broncos would want outside of Kevin Smith -- and even then, RB's are not too hard to find.
No, despite the senseless babble from the Broncos, it will be picks. I've heard of 3-way deals with Cleveland, but that seems a little too convoluted to work. There is a reason there aren't that many 3-way deals: too many moving parts, to easy to fall apart.
One scenario has Cutler for just #20. Seems a little light to me, but would be a coup for the Lions. Another is #20 and #82 - the Roy picks. I would take Roy for Cutler, essentially, straight up -- wouldn't you? Yet a third (and most often bandied about) is #1 overall and #20 for Cutler and #12. Denver gets #1 to take a new QB (Stafford) whom they can groom behind Simms for a year or two while they rebuild the D and still have #20 to help with that defensive rebuilding. Detroit would essentially be taking Cutler instead of Stafford with the #1 overall, and be moving up 8 spots to 12 where a big guy like Raji may be, one of the top OT's will likely still be around, as well as a couple of the top LB. In other words, Lions would have a QB AND have #12, 33, 65, 82 to develop the D.
Still, all of this is just rumor and speculation. Fortunately, after the ifseason so far while I can see that Mayhew will be aggressive in his moves he is not going to overpay by too much -- whether that is in draft picks or salaries. Sure, he'd like Cutler -- but Denver is the desperate one, and unlike Millen I don't think he is going to forget who is really in charge of the situation. Status quo for the Lions is just fine -- build with those picks. If the price is right however, Mayhew won't hesitate to buy.