MIAMI -- Former St. Louis running back Marshall Faulk was a popular guy Tuesday at Super Bowl media day. Now an NFL Network analyst, Faulk has some special insight when it comes to Chicago’s new offensive coordinator.
Indeed, Faulk played seven seasons for the Rams when Mike Martz was either the offensive coordinator or head coach. I asked Faulk what advice he would give Bears players as they prepare for the transition.
“Just be in shape,” Faulk said. “You’ll actually practice harder than you play in a game.”
The dynamic everyone wants to know about, of course, is Martz’s relationship with quarterback Jay Cutler. They seemed to hit it off well enough during a weekend meeting in Tennessee, but Faulk said there is no way Cutler can be prepared for what Martz is about to throw at him.
“I’m not sure how [former Denver coach] Mike Shanahan coached him,” Martz said. “And I don’t know how [former Bears offensive coordinator] Ron [Turner] coached him. But this will be eye-opening for him. He’ll never have as much on his plate as he has now. He’ll never complain about throwing the football. Trust me. This will be an experience for him. Last year, he looked like he was bored in the Bears’ offense, maybe a little frustrated.
“If he’s frustrated next year, it won’t be because he is bored.”
We have yet to hear from Cutler on the Martz hire. If he’s smart, he’ll wholly embrace it. More often than not, Martz has elevated the play of the quarterbacks he’s coached.
My corporate cousin Jeff Dickerson of ESPNChicago.com spoke with Faulk about other aspects of the Martz’s offense, including how it might change the roles of tight end Greg Olsen and tailback Matt Forte.