Jay Cutler gets back into groove in Dolphins camp
Davie, Fla. — Jay Cutler woke up in his hotel room Tuesday morning and didn’t know where he was. Then the fog cleared, and he realized it was time to go back to work.
The Dolphins’ new quarterback practiced for the first time since December, marking the start of his comeback from a brief retirement.
Rust removal included 11-on-11 drills and one-on-one conversations as he learns the names of teammates.
When the workout ended, Cutler, 34, said he had no second thoughts about deciding to renew his working relationship with coach Adam Gase and return for another season.
“It felt right,” Cutler said. “Going into work and getting here and going through the motions of the practice, it felt good. I told Adam thanks for bringing me in. It’s fun to be back out here.”
Cutler, who parted with the Bears in March, agreed to delay his fledgling network TV career when he signed a $10 million, one-year contract with Miami. He’s expected to start in place of Ryan Tannehill, who likely is out for the season with a knee injury.
Cutler took the practice field wearing jersey No. 6, his number since high school, after reserve quarterback Brandon Doughty agreed to give it up.
Same old Jay, said Gase, who was the offensive coordinator when both were with the Bears.
“He remembers basically everything with the offense,” Gase said. “He said he felt good, and he’s not going to sugarcoat anything with me. He felt just right back in it.”
Said Cutler: “It’s kind of a crash course, if you already took the course before.”
Cutler spent much of practice engaged in steady conversation with backup quarterback Matt Moore, quarterbacks coach Bo Hardegree and even Tannehill.
“It’s a tough situation for Ryan,” Cutler said.
“He has been great and supportive.”
Also supportive was former Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, Cutler’s nemesis when they were rivals in the NFC North.
“I’ve played against him many, many time,” Suh said.
“I actually got my first sack against him. A good dude.
“I don’t like any quarterbacks, but he was one guy I definitely had respect for, because he took hits and never cried, never complained, just got up and played the next play.”