The Chicago Bears lost a 45-41 shootout on Sunday to the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field, to drop their record to 4-3 on the season, and fall out of first place in the NFC North.

And much as we could ramble on and on about the game itself, the main focus for the Bears following the game is without question on Jay Cutler, after the Bears' quarterback left the game with a groin injury, and did not return.

Because, let's be real here: If Cutler is out for an extended period of time, the result of Sunday's game probably doesn't matter for the Bears in the grand scheme of things.

The injury happened as Cutler tried to avoid a sack (and was unable to) from the Redskins' Chris Baker in the second quarter. Here's GIF evidence of the play that may be haunting Bears fans for a while:


Source: GIFD Sports

Cutler, a free-agent-to-be (something else worth keeping in mind here), then rolled around in obvious pain, and eventually got up and walked like a 95-year-old man to the tunnel, where finally the FedEx field crew just got him a cart. 

NBC Chicago's Peggy Kusinski tweeted a photo of Cutler grimacing in pain as he got on the cart:


Cutler reportedly underwent an x-rays at the stadium, and the Bears announced that he will have an MRI on Monday:

After seeing the pain Cutler was in, learning it was a groin injury, and learning that he would get an MRI on Monday, my immediate thought was 'torn groin' and I visualized Nomar Garciaparra falling to the ground in excruciating pain with that injury in 2005 as a member of the Chicago Cubs. Minutes later, I saw that I was not alone with that thinking, as the Bears are apparently worried Cutler's injury is similar to Garciaparra, according to CSN Chicago's David Kaplan:




NFL.Com's Michael Silver is hearing from two Bears sources that the injury "could be bad":


That is of course a very obvious statement, but I'm taking that as people around the Bears are worried the groin injury is a tear.

Additionally, less than an hour after the Bears-Redskins game ended, ESPN's Adam Schefter and other reporters said that the Bears are going to re-sign quarterback Jordan Palmer :
Getting quarterback depth if you're concerned at all about Cutler is a no-brainer as there is no other backup quarterback on the Bears roster after Josh McCown (more on him below), but immediately after the game ended? That's showing some noticeable urgency, especially when you factor in that the team doesn't even play for two weeks (Monday night, November 4th in Green Bay).

So, I'm pretty much just going to tell myself Cutler is out for the season, or at least for a while, where his absence may as well be the length of the season given the massive impact it has on the Bears' playoff chances. And if I'm wrong and it was just a painful pulled groin or something, I will consider that absolutely awesome, potentially season-saving news for the Bears. Again, the Bears are on their bye in week eight too, so that's certainly a nice thing for a potential Cutler return if the MRI reveals the injury isn't a long-term thing.

McCown really did a remarkable job in replacement of Cutler on Sunday, completing 14 of 20 passes for 204 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. He even led a touchdown drive to get the Bears the lead in the final minute. Frankly, I was stunned with his performance. Bears head coach Marc Trestman was fantastic with his play-calling to get high percentage passes out of McCown and into the hands of the Bears' playmakers.

However, McCown is a 34-year-old journeyman that was recently out of the league for a while for a reason. And with the way the Bears' defense is playing, McCown would likely have to do more than just "manage" a game to get the Bears wins. That's especially the case with the Bears facing high-scoring offenses in huge divisional games in weeks 9-10 (Packers and Lions). Cutler can win you such potential shootout games, and unless McCown surprisingly keeps playing like the guy we saw on Sunday, he'll make it very tough for the Bears to come away with wins in games like that.

McCown pretty much summed up his quarterback abilities in comparison to Cutler with this simple (yet fantastic) quote:

Hopefully, Cutler's MRI results come back with much more encouraging results than we fear, and we can get to see No. 6 throw a lot more this year.

UPDATE: Cutler is out four weeks.

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