Go ahead, yell for Miami Dolphins to yank Jay Cutler, but Adam Gase isn’t listening

Jay Cutler, who was sacked four times by the Saints, is hit by Rafael Bush. (Photo by Henry Browne/Getty Images)

DAVIE — Jay Cutler will start at quarterback when the Dolphins play the Tennessee Titans on Sunday.

And he’ll likely finish the game at quarterback.

And it shouldn’t shock anybody if he starts the next week against Atlanta and the week after that against the Jets.

Fans may be turning up the heat on Cutler after two poor performances, but one person isn’t.

It’s the one who matters: Adam Gase.

Gase arrived with the reputation of quarterback whisperer, but on top of that, we can add the title quarterback supporter. One of Gase’s first moves as Dolphins coach was to reassure Ryan Tannehill that his new coach had his back. That same trust is now afforded Cutler.

Gase knows people are wondering what Cutler has done to deserve such faith. He knows some are wondering if it’s time to get the hook and insert ol’ reliable, Matt Moore, on the reasoning that six points over the past two games is Cutler’s fault.

“That drives me nuts,” Gase said Monday. “I heard when I got here Ryan couldn’t play. That was wrong. The evaluation skills that everybody (has) about quarterbacks is really bad. So I’m not going to listen to anybody outside myself.”

Gase is defensive of Cutler to the point that when the subject of the Wildcat play from the Saints game was brought up, Gase rattled off all the things that went wrong before veering off into the one thing that went right. If you’ll recall, the Dolphins snapped the ball to running back Jay Ajayi as Cutler lined up at wide receiver.

The Dolphins mangled the play so badly that Ajayi was stopped for no gain, which the Dolphins would have taken compared to the 5-yard loss incurred when receiver Kenny Stills was flagged for improperly lining up. For whatever reason, outsiders focused on the fact Cutler nonchalantly stood there out wide as the play unraveled.

Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler talks about what went wrong after the loss to the Saints in London. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

“I’m glad Cutler did what he did because that’s what he’s supposed to do,” Gase said. (No, Cutler wasn’t supposed to wipe out a linebacker to clear a path for Ajayi.) “Unfortunately, nobody knows that, so … ”

Gase’s voice tailed off, in a “what’s the use?” fashion.

Gase won’t want to hear it, but Cutler is mired in the worst two-game stretch of his career since 2013, when he injured his groin against Washington after completing only three passes. He didn’t return for a few weeks, when he recorded a 69.8 passer rating against Detroit.

The hope in Miami was that surrounded by the skill players he has, Cutler would consistently come up with games the level of the opener against the Chargers, when he completed 72.7 percent of his passes and had a 101.8 rating. But true to much of his career, Cutler’s rating plummeted to the low 70s the past two weeks while enduring seven total sacks.

No combination of Gase whispering in his ear, or having standout receivers in Stills, Jarvis Landry and DeVante Parker, or having a top running back in Ajayi, has been enough to duplicate Cutler’s career-best 2015 season when he and Gase were together in Chicago.

Whose fault is that? Hardly Cutler’s, says Gase, on the theory that if, given a reasonable amount of time, Cutler will hit open receivers.

“If he’s going to get hit from start to finish, I don’t care who you put back there,” Gase said. “We need to do a better job of protecting him, being where we’re supposed to be. … We can’t let him just take hit after hit after hit and then expect him to stand in there. It’s not going to happen.”

You’d have to go back to one of the final times Gase was calling the shots for Cutler in Chicago — to Dec. 27, 2015 — for the last time Cutler started a game and produced more than 20 points. The Bears beat Tampa Bay 26-21 that day.

Here’s an alarming stat: Since then, Cutler has started nine games and managed an average of 13.2 points. You know what sounds worse than 13? Two, which is the number of games the Dolphins would have won last season by scoring 13 points.

Maybe those streaks and trends will cease Sunday against the Titans. Maybe they won’t.

Just don’t hold your breath if you expect Gase to ignite a quarterback controversy.

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[Column: Dolphins coach Adam Gase sounds lost as offense sputters]

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[PHOTO GALLERY: Live images from Dolphins-Saints tilt in London]

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