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Jay Cutler to start for Bears, fantasy value could be high

The Bears quarterback hasn't played a full game since Week 6, but appears set to start Sunday. We break down the fantasy implications.


After missing the team's last four games -- and without a full beginning-to-end game since Week 6 -- Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler will start Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, Bears head coach Marc Trestman said Thursday.

For the season, Cutler has 1,908 passing yards and 13 touchdowns against eight interceptions. His backup, Josh McCown, meanwhile has 1,809 passing yards, with the same 13 touchdowns against only one interception.

Peyton Manning is fantasy's top-scoring quarterback this season, with 331 fantasy points. He's thrown all but three of the Denver Broncos' pass attempts.

Drew Brees is fantasy's No. 2 scoring quarterback this season, with 281 fantasy points. He has every single one of the New Orleans Saints' pass attempts.

The No. 3 fantasy scoring quarterback, if the "player" is just "whoever is quarterback for a given team," is the Cutler and McCown combination for the Chicago Bears. The two quarterbacks have combined for 244 fantasy points on the season, two points ahead of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford.

Fantasy impact: Some Bears fans were clamoring for McCown to keep the starting job, with the quarterback having an incredible game against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 14. Still, the Bears have said all along that Cutler would get the job back once he was healed up from his ankle injury, and it appears he's ready to go.

With the development of Alshon Jeffery and the addition of Martellus Bennett as offensive weapons to go with Brandon Marshall and Matt Forte, there has been more fantasy potential for Bears quarterbacks this season, as McCown proved Monday.

Of course, Cutler is coming in rusty, and if he struggles, the team might be quick to go back to McCown. McCown or a definitively healthy Cutler would be a top-10 fantasy quarterback this week, but a rusty Cutler probably slots in as a high-end QB2, though he has the potential to come in much higher.

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