Jay Cutler got the last laugh.
The Pro Bowl passer, who forced a blockbuster trade out of Denver last spring and became the Chicago Bears’ first franchise quarterback since Sid Luckman, returned to Denver’s Invesco Field on Sunday night and led his new team to a 27-17 exhibition win over the Broncos.
Cutler disregarded the thousands of hecklers, including Broncos pass-rusher Elvis Dumervil, while leading Chicago on three scoring drives, capped by a 12-play, 98-yarder just before halftime that gave the Bears a 17-3 lead.
“I thought it was going to be like this,” Cutler said. “They got good fans here. A lot of boos — they got pretty loud there at one point. It was what we kind of prepared for.”
The adversary he left behind, Broncos rookie coach Josh McDaniels, had a distressing home debut, as did Denver’s new quarterback, Kyle Orton, who gashed his right index finger to cut short a middling performance against his former team.
Cutler went 15-for-21 for 144 yards and a touchdown. Orton finished 12-for-16 for 96 yards.
Source: Bruschi will retire
Tedy Bruschi is retiring after a 13-year career marked by an inspiring return to the New England Patriots as a starting linebacker eight months after a stroke.
A person familiar with his decision told The Associated Press that the 36-year-old Bruschi will announce his retirement at a news conference this morning. The team declined to comment.
Bruschi played on all three Super Bowl-winning Patriots teams. The last championship came on Feb. 6, 2005, against the Philadelphia Eagles. Ten days later, he was hospitalized after experiencing numbness in his left arm and left leg and blurry vision. He was diagnosed with a mild stroke.
Bruschi’s play declined last season, and he missed much of this year’s training camp for undisclosed reasons.
Coach: Vick not a disruption
Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg doesn’t think the addition of Michael Vick will disrupt the rhythm of Philadelphia’s offense.
Vick was involved in six plays Thursday during the team’s exhibition game against Jacksonville. Quarterback Donovan McNabb said coming in and out of the game disrupted the flow.
“It’s not going to be a disruption,” Mornhinweg said. “Believe me, it won’t be. It’s not an issue.”
St. Louis Rams quarterback Marc Bulger, out since Aug. 17 after fracturing the pinky on his throwing hand, threw 21 passes in a side session at the morning practice. Coach Steve Spagnuolo was noncommittal regarding Bulger’s status for the final preseason game Thursday against the Kansas City Chiefs. … The Cincinnati Bengals agreed to a four-year contract with their first-round draft pick, offensive tackle Andre Smith. The signing of Smith, the sixth overall pick, leaves Michael Crabtree, drafted by the San Francisco 49ers with the 10th overall pick, as the only unsigned first-round selection. … San Francisco strong safety Michael Lewis sustained his second concussion in 11 days and will be evaluated this week before he can return to the field. … The 49ers waived five players: receivers Mark Bradford and Chris Francies, cornerbacks Carlos Thomas and Jahi Word-Daniels and kicker Alex Romero.