Its safe to say that Chicago Bears' quarterback Jay Culter won't be winning a Mr. Congeniality award anytime soon. If football is America's favorite game, Cutler is the NFL's least popular player. In the latest public survey from Nielsen/E-Poll ranking the 10 most disliked athletes in America, Jay Cutler came in at #4 behind only Lance Armstrong, Manti Te'o and Tiger Woods.
Don't get me wrong - I am no Jay Cutler fan. Few Chicago Bears in history have done less to endear themselves to the fan base than "ol' grumpy face." Cutler's personality is so surly he makes Barry Bonds look like an over-stuffed Teddy Bear. However, Cutler doesn't deserve to be that high on this list - he has neither performed well enough on the field nor behaved badly enough off it to be so despised by the American public. If he wasn't former starlet Kristin Cavallari's baby daddy he probably would be a non-entity nationally.
This all got me to thinking, who are the top 10 most disliked current athletes by Chicagoans? After weeks of consideration here is my final list.
Top 10 Most Disliked Athletes by Chicagoans
10) Tyler Hansbrough, Power Forward, Indiana Pacers
Lets get this straight - as a Duke Alum I came in biased against Tyler Hansbrough. Psycho-T has always found a way to make life more difficult for whoever his opponent is. As the Indiana Pacers continue to develop as the Bulls major annual competitors for the Central Division crown, I guarantee your hate for Tyler Hansbrough will continue to build. Hansbrough first became notorious amongst Bulls fans after a series of hard fouls against Derrick Rose in round one of the 2010-11 Eastern Conference playoffs. Hansborough's reckless ways would earn him a sharp elbow from Kurt Thomas. I have to say I'm looking forward to future battles between Psycho-T and Joakim Noah.
9) Ryan Braun, Left Field, Milwaukee Brewers
Only the Cubs historic ineptness keeps Ryan Braun from placing higher on this list. No one feels more at home in the 'Friendly Confines' than Ryan Bruan. In 43 career games at Wrigley Field, Braun is hitting a scorching .373 with 7 HR, 40 RBI, 69 hits, 16 2Bs, and 7 SB. Making matters worse is the fact that the 2011 NL MVP tested positive for PEDs - only to have his 50 game suspension reversed on a technicality. Braun has been linked along with A-Rod to the most recent PED case to emanate out of South Florida. If Braun is proven to be implicated in this case his punishment could be more severe than for another first time offender.
8) A.J. Pierzynski, Catcher, Texas Rangers
Ask any Sox fan what opposition player they hate most and without a seconds hesitation you'll hear the words AJ. Pretty impressive considering he hasn't even played a game yet for the Texas Rangers. When you combine disgruntled Sox fans with the legions of Cubs fans who wish they had been the one to punch AJ in the face instead of Michael Barrett you know that's some serious hate.
7) Rajon Rondo, Point Gaurd, Boston Celtics
Among Eastern Conference PGs Rajon Rondo is Derrick Rose's chief rival. Rondo has long gave the Bulls fits - perhaps never more than in the Bulls-Celtics epic 2009 playoff series. While ACL injuries to Rose (2012) and Rondo (2013) in consecutive seasons have kept these two from meeting in the playoffs for the past few years, look for this rivalry to continue strong in 2014 and beyond.
6) Jay Cutler, Quarterback, Chicago Bears
Jay Cutler is a huge douche bag. He's a coach killer There is no other way to put it. Has anyone in history ever looked more consistently miserable while doing their self-proclaimed 'dream job' than #6? While his affinity for throwing interceptions is well documented (see below) the Chicago Sun-Times recently revealed my all-time favorite douchebag Cutler story.
Cavallari told E! that she and Cutler will get married this year. And, yes, the ring has been delivered.
“It was so silly,’’ she said. “I was in the airport, leaving Chicago. We had just spent however many days together and we were text-ing and somehow it came up, like, ‘Oh, shall we get married?’ We’re like, ‘Yeah, OK.’ And then he sent my ring in the mail.’’
I mean really? How perfect is it that Jay Cutler proposed to his reality star girlfriend via text message then proceeded to mail her the engagement ring? If that doesn't say Sausage King of Chicago I don't know what does!
How many times has Jay made you feel exactly like this...
5) Clay Matthews, Linebacker, Green Bay Packers
Since the Packers drafted Clay Matthews out of USC in the 1st round of the 2009 NFL draft the Bears have gone 1-8 against their arch-rivals from the North. The blocking schemes of Ron Turner, Mike Martz, and Mike Tice were all unable to slow Matthews who has recorded 33 tackles, 7.5 sacks, 1 int, and 1 forced fumble in his career against the Bears.
5) Raffi Torres, Left Wing, Phoenix Coyotes
Last spring, Raffi Torres became public enemy #1 in Chicago after this vicious high hit on Marian Hossa helped cut short the Chicago Blackhawks' 2011-12 season.
Only the NHL lockout and a suspension that carried into this season prevented the Blackhawks from exacting revenge on Raffi Torres in a more timely manner. In Torres' very first shift against the Hawks this season, defenseman Jamal Mayers hopped the bench and fought Torres to the delight of both the team and its supporters everywhere. If the Blackhawks were off to anything less than their record breaking start to the season, Raffi Torres would be at least a few spots higher up on this list.
4) Roberto Luongo, Goalie, Vancouver Canucks
Chicagoans love to hate Roberto Luongo more than any other current opponent. Hate for the Vancouver goaltender has manifested after years of fierce battles between the Hawks and the Canucks. In 28 career regular season starts against the Chicago Blackhawks Roberto Luongo has a 15-9-3 record with at .930 save percentage. Moreover at the 2010 Winter Olympics, Luongo earned himself plenty of disdain by playing the role of spoiler as starting goalie for the Team Canada squad that defeated Team USA 4-3 in an epic gold metal game. The silver lining is that the Hawks have gotten their revenge in the playoffs where in 17 career starts Luongo has posted a 7-11 record with a 3.36 GAA and .892 SV%. Only because some of Luongo's most epic melt-downs have occurred at the hands of the Hawks, deep in the playoffs, does he fail to make it into the top three.
For your enjoyment check out all 21 goals the Hawks scored against Luongo in the 2010 playoffs!
3) Ndamukong Suh, Defensive Tackle, Detroit Lions
Ndamukong Suh is a dirty football player. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. No player gets under the Bears skin more than Ndamukong Suh. The former Nebraska product is about the only player in the league who can begrudgingly force Bears fans to rally around Jay Cutler. As much as we love to hate our starting quarterback, there is nothing worse than watching him being carted off the field (more on that later). Out of every player in the NFC North, Ndamukong Suh is the guy who is most likely to force Cutler to the sidelines on any given play.
2) LeBron James, Small Forward, Miami Heat
LeBron James has burned the Bulls since he debuted in 2003-2004. In 34 career regular season games against the Bulls LeBron has averaged 29.4 pts, 7.1 reb, 6.1 ast, 1.9 stl, and 1 blks per game. Among Eastern Conference foes LeBron only scores more against the Boston Celtics.
After long being rumored as a favorite to sign King James in free agency during the summer of 2010, LeBron spurned the Bulls and decided to take his talents to South Beach, much to the chagrin of Chicagoans everywhere. As the 2010-2011 Heat struggled to become the 'super-team,' no fan base outside of Cleveland took more joy out of watching LeBron and Co. suffer. All the while Tom Thibodeau's Bulls went 62-20 to finish with the best record in the NBA and Derrick Rose became the youngest MVP in NBA history.
While most of the nation has finally forgiven LeBron after an epic 2012 where LBJ captured a Gold Medal, NBA Championship, and NBA MVP award, Chicagoan most certainly have not. Everyone in the CHI will tell you that fortune stole the 2012 NBA title away from the Bulls when D-Rose tore his ACL.
1) Jay Cutler's Backup, Quarterback, Chicago Bears
Jay Cutler's backup is often the most popular player in Chicago... until he has to actually go in a game. Over the past three seasons quarterbacks Todd Collins, Caleb Hanie, Josh McCown and Jason Campbell have all done their part to torpedo otherwise promising Bears seasons. I would write more about this but just thinking about the recent performances of Jay Cutler's backups brings on a case of irritable bowel syndrome. How bad have these backups been? They've been so awful that no one has taken the time to put together an epic fail compilation of YouTube. Revisiting any of these performances is simply too awful to bear.
Played his way off the list with a strong first half of the NBA season.
Finally waited for the Cubs to lose 100+ games to start earning his paycheck.
No Chicago athlete has done less with more over the past three seasons. Only his brilliant first few seasons enabled Hester to build up enough good will to keep himself from being on this list.
He didn't come home when momma called in the summer of 2010 but Robbins' favorite son has been immortalized by this Lincoln Navigator commercial.
Tags: AJ Pierzynski, Alfonso Soriano, Boston Celtics, Carlos Boozer, Chicago Bears, Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago Bulls, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Clay Matthews, Detroit Lions, Devin Hester, Dwayne Wade, Green Bay Packers, Indiana Pacers, Jay Cutler, LeBron James, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Brewers, Raffi Torres, Rajon Rondo, Roberto Luongo, Ryan Braun, Team Canada, Team USA, Texas Rangers, Tyler Hansbrough, Vancouver Canucks, Winter Olympics