Monday Night an Opportunity for Brandon Marshall to Emerge

| September 30th, 2012

We’re all fixated on Jay Cutler’s every movement.

The first-ever franchise quarterback for the Chicago Bears has been defined by often spectacular touchdowns and even more spectacular interceptions. He delivers media interviews with an uncommonly smug, dry sense of humor that some of us love and some of us hate. Occasionally he shoves a lineman. His lady friend was on a TV show or something. His baby is named after the most dangerous city in New Jersey – Camden. But perhaps, just perhaps, ’tis time we alter our fixation. At least for an evening.

Remember when Phil emery acquired, er, stole Brandon Marshall from the Miami Dolphins? Remember how you felt when Jay Glazer broke the story on Twitter? It was a landmark day for this Bears franchise. It was the official end of the Jerry Angelo tenure as GM. Finally a true number one receiver had come to town. Finally the Bears had the type of big threat on the outside to occupy hours of attention in the defensive meeting rooms of their opponents. Finally the Bears had a receiver who would not be pushed around by the league’s top corners. Finally Jay Cutler had been reunited with his favorite receiver.

Then Green Bay happened. The Packers sat their best corner in front of Marshall and kept a safety involved almost all night. The coaching staff was perplexed. Cutler was errant. Marshall was Muhsin Muhammad.

Monday night in Dallas the Bears will face what is currently one of the best defenses in the NFL. They’ve got what are arguably the best pair of starting corners in the game – Carr and Claiborne. And the the great DeMarcus Ware will undoubtedly beat the Bears offensive line a few times, forcing Cutler to make a throw or five prior to his wishes. I have heard far too much analysis from fans and media along the lines of, “The Bears will struggle to make plays in the passing game” and “This defense will shut the Bears down on the outside.” That kind of analysis was accurate when the number one receiver WAS Muhammad or Johnny Knox or Brandon Lloyd or Marty Booker or Marcus Robinson or David Terrell or whomever the hell the Bears lined up outside.

Marshall is meant to be different and its against these types of defenses, these types of corners we expect Marshall to thrive. We’ve had our #1s go into a dark cave and hide against the best. We’ve never had one step into the arena and battle – the way Marshall always seemed to battle Darrelle Revis in the AFC East (see video above). Monday night is the night for Brandon Marshall win his one-on-ones and usher the Bears to a signature early-season victory.

How about it, Brandon?