Jay Cutler unfazed by tough start in loss to Panthers in preseason opener

SHARE Jay Cutler unfazed by tough start in loss to Panthers in preseason opener

It was an auspicious start for Jay Cutler and the Bears’ offense. But it’s early.

Cutler threw an interception on his first pass of the preseason against the Carolina Panthers on Friday night at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte when Josh Norman intercepted his pass intended for Alshon Jeffery and returned it 11 yards to the Bears 18 to set up a four-play Panthers’ touchdown drive. Cutler played two more series and finished 6-of-8 for 56 yards, no touchdowns and the one interception for a 54.2 passer rating.

‘‘It was an unfortunate start,’’ he said. ‘‘I have to put the ball on Alshon’s other shoulder. We had some good stuff after that; we had some bad stuff. Typical preseason game. We just have to take a look at it and get better next week.’’

Cutler acknowledged that the Bears’ plan of attack was rudimentary in the first preseason game.

“There was no real game plan but we had some plays we wanted to get to early — try to get the ball out pretty quickly,’’ he said. ‘‘We just wanted to kind of get into the flow and get out of the game. There wasn’t a lot to what we put into this one.”

For starters, Cutler was not unhappy with the way things went. But the Bears’ offense is starting from Square One.

“I thought it was good communication,’’ Cutler said. ‘‘We got in and out of the huddle. Obviously we’d like to have that first one back but it’s something to learn from.’’

The Bears play their second preseason game Thursday against the San Diego Chargers at Soldier Field. The obvious goal is improvement. The Bears and Cutler left a lot of room for it Friday night.

“I think there is going to be more game planning going into it,’’ Cutler said. ‘‘We’ll have a little bit more elaborate plan. We’ll just have to play a little bit longer and execute. I don’t really like to get into it before we see the tape, so once we see the tape, we’ll have a better idea of certain things we need to work on.”

VIDEO: Cutler intercepted on first pass attempt

The Latest
Two men were found fatally shot minutes apart on the West and South sides.
The woman was discovered about 4:35 p.m. in the 5500 block of West Melrose Street and pronounced dead at the scene, Chicago police said.
Busy with his own family and career, man distances himself from siblings with alcoholism and personality disorder, but feels guilty about it.
Black Cook County residents are four times as likely to have difficulty saving money or paying their bills as compared to whites; Latinos are three times as likely.
Illinois law bars insurers from charging out-of-network rates for neonatal care at in-network hospitals. But that didn’t keep it from happening to Brenna Kearney and her husband Casey Trumble. Only a reporter’s questions got things fixed.