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updated: 10/5/2012 11:00 AM

Bears' Cutler deserves more credit for game

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  • Bears QB Jay Cutler completed 18 of 24 passes against the Cowboys on Monday, including 8 of 8 in the third quarter.

      Bears QB Jay Cutler completed 18 of 24 passes against the Cowboys on Monday, including 8 of 8 in the third quarter.
    Associated Press

 
Mike North

Bears quarterback Jay Cutler went 18-for-24 for 275 yards and had 2 touchdowns Monday night against Dallas.

I'm just telling you in case you haven't heard, because it wasn't covered very much by the national media.

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He had a great game, and what do we hear the next day from the boys in Bristol? How Cutler and Mike Tice, the Bears offensive coordinator, had a problem on the sidelines, and whether Dallas quarterback Tony Romo was an elite quarterback or not.

I'm not a huge fan of Cutler, but come on! The guy played really well, and yet it was like the back story.

Romo is a nice guy and Jay isn't. If Romo had Cutler's numbers that night, some people would be talking about a bust in Canton for him.

Monday night, Cutler had three things happen. First, he completely outplayed Romo Second, he had a disagreement with his boss, which is not a big deal -- it happens. Third, he wanted it more than Romo.

Cutler is a competitor who lost his cool. I'm sure anybody who has been competitive in the workplace understands. I am sure I will criticize him at some point down the line, but let me say this to the Bears' quarterback: great game Monday night, Jay. Great game!

The improbable and baseball

The 1969 amazing New York Mets are famous for doing the improbable. If you look back, they had an average to below-average lineup, but they had studs who could pitch by the names of Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan and Jerry Koosman.

Those Mets set the standard, but how about the amazing Oakland Athletics?

Can anybody who is a casual baseball fan name six or seven guys from the Oakland squad?

Manager Bob Melvin has done a fabulous job, and maybe if they win I will finally watch the movie about Billy Beane, "Money Ball."

Nobody saw this one coming as the Athletics were picked by some to lose from 92 to 100 games.

I believe they will win it all. If you love a classic underdog story, latch onto the A's.

While an honorable mention goes to the Baltimore Orioles -- who finished second by a game in the American League East and will play in the wild-card game against Texas -- I believe the A's have the mojo to get it done.

Youth football is a winner

My thanks to the fine people who run the Oriole Park youth football league on the Northwest side of Chicago. What a great program. My longtime friend, Phil Dunne, and his son Brendan asked if I would ride in the homecoming parade and do the coin toss. I loved participating in it.

I'd also like to thank head man Bill Snyder of the Oriole Park youth league, and head coach of the Falcons, John Bauer. The Falcons beat Elmwood Park, but that isn't the point. All these kids are winners because there are parents and volunteers who care. If you're driving down the street and you see a youth league football game -- pull over and watch for a while.

NFL picks

I went 2-1 last week, bringing my record to 5-6-1. I had Cincinnati and Minnesota as winners, and Buffalo was my loser.

This week I'll take Tennessee (+6) over Minnesota with Chris Johnson stepping up. Michael Vick is on a roll, so I like the Eagles (+3) over Pittsburgh. Eagles win on short rest.

Program notes

I am hosting on Fox Sports radio 6-9 p.m. Saturdays, 9 p.m. to midnight Sundays, and 6-9 p.m. Mondays. Listen on XM169, iHeart radio or foxsportsradio.com.

• Mike North's column appears each Tuesday and Friday in the Daily Herald, and his video commentary can be found Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at dailyherald.com. For more, visit northtonorth.com.

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