Jay Cutler's NFL career may be nearing an end as the 33-year-old quarterback is still contemplating retirement after 11 seasons, according to a league source.
With Tony Romo moving to the broadcast booth, attention shifted to Cutler and Colin Kaepernick on the quarterback free-agent market. Some wonder if Kaepernick's off-field gestures have kept teams from pursuing him, but there has been little buzz surrounding Cutler's future.
And that may be because he is ready to call it quits.
The NFL Network reported in February that retirement was one of the options Cutler was considering when it became obvious the Bears were going to release him, which they did in March. Cutler, who turns 34 on April 29, endured a long list of injuries during his eight seasons in Chicago, including a torn labrum that required surgery in December.
He also suffered a concussion in a 2010 game against the New York Giants, when he was sacked a record nine times in the first half. Despite missing the next game because of the concussion, Cutler was sacked 52 times in 2010. Cutler may not have delivered the playoff success Bears fans expected when he was acquired from Denver in 2009 for a hefty price as he led Chicago to just one postseason, but his toughness was beyond reproach. Brian Urlacher once called Cutler one of his toughest teammates.
Cutler doesn't have financial worries after earning $110 million in his career, and his wife, Kristin Cavallari, is a successful TV personality. They have three children. And it's not that Cutler didn't have an opportunity to keep playing. The Jets were believed to be interested, but at this point in his life, Cutler likely wasn't ready to head back to a rebuilding team.
The Houston Texans face the prospect of starting Tom Savage after losing out on Romo and likely will be in the market for a quarterback either through free agency, the draft, or both. Houston, with the NFL's top-ranked defense last season, is a solid quarterback away from Super Bowl contention, making Cutler a logical option. But it's uncertain if there is interest in pursuing Cutler.
ESPN's Jeff Dickerson contributed to this report.