Recently some members of the Denver press wondered how much press quarterback Jay Cutler does on a weekly basis.
In addition to being a tremendous young quarterback, Jay Cutler is the most popular Bronco in terms of press requests, so the key is to manage and coordinate his time in this regard.
As you can imagine, this is very unpopular to members of the press, because their desire, in a perfect media world, is whatever access they desire, whenever they desire it.
But at the same time they are aware (sort of) of how busy someone like Jay Cutler is. At the end of the day, and at the start of the day, every day, it’s football, football and football.
And what we do, what we ask, has to be controlled so that the player can concentrate on that part of his job that is the one for which he was hired.
In actuality, there is no other quarterback in the NFL as busy as Jay Cutler, because of his well documented health situation that has made him a key national role model in the most positive sense for the cause of Type-1 diabetes.
He monitors himself and takes care of his condition on his own regularly, but when the mantle of spokesman is given to someone, whether by request or by life’s fates, it cannot be removed. Thus, Jay is the role model for a large group of people in everything he does, and he is aware of that at all times. All this and he is just in his third season and is just 25. It’s amazing how much he does, but he can’t do it alone.
So in a way, he has more on his plate that many other quarterbacks who have a lot more years in the NFL.
Still, Jay finds time for the press, with the supervision and control of the Broncos’ PR department.
He meets the Denver press on Wednesdays and again after every game.
To a lot of people, that probably seems like all he does.
But excluding those two weekly press conferences, he has done five telephone conference calls with the press corps from Oakland, San Diego, Kansas City, New England and Miami.
He has had six one-on-one interviews with local writers so far this year (we log all his interviews to make sure his time is balanced and he can focus on football).
He has done major national interviews with Denver resident Rick Reilly of ESPN.com, The Sporting News, ESPN television (nice job by Rachel Nichols doing background and being a real professional in her prep work), plus ESPN’s Pardon The Interruption (with Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon).
Besides that, Marshall Faulk of NFL Network flew to Denver to do a sit-down interview with Jay (a great piece), and he also has done guest spots on Fox Sports’ The Best Damn Sports Show Period and a national radio interview with Jim Gray (that one went international via the Armed Forces Radio Network, including to our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan).
Jay has his own weekly TV show, “Jay Cutler Live” on CBS 4, as you might have seen, and does a weekly pre-game show on KOA radio.
Also, Jay makes a call-in to The Ride Home (with Dave Logan) every week.
Plus, every week Jay sits down with the announcers, producer and director of the network doing the game, usually on Saturday, to brief them on his condition and answer some questions so they can get ready for their Sunday telecast.
So it might seem to some that he does not do as much as some would like, and it is absolutely true that our PR department controls every minute of this media time, because Jay Cutler’s time is pivotal to the Broncos–but he does more than any other player.
The key is time management on a weekly level.
All the requests (and most are actually refused) that “make the cut” are presented to Jay, and he and the PR department mutually determine which ones are the most valuable in terms of exposure and use of time, and then those–and only those–are set up for the week.
All the others disappear, at least for that week, and sometimes forever.
There is a lot that goes into playing quarterback in the NFL, and working with the press is an important part of that schedule.
But that’s why they call it a schedule. It has to be scheduled.
And that is to everybody’s benefit, but most of all it has to be to Jay’s.