Maurice Jones-Drew: Jay Cutler gets it

Updated: February 2, 2011, 8:37 PM ET
ESPNChicago.com

Maurice Jones-Drew won't apologize for his critical tweet of Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, but the Jacksonville Jaguars running back wants to move on from the controversy he and several other players created during the NFC Championship Game on Jan. 23.

"If I did something wrong I would apologize," Jones-Drew said Wednesday on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "I didn't mean any hard feelings by it. I think [Cutler] understands that as well. I really think that the media took it out of control and got offended by it because players said it before certain media said it."

An injured Cutler left the Bears' 21-14 loss to the Green Bay Packers after he played one series in the second half. The Bears announced the next day that Cutler had sprained his MCL, but Jones-Drew and several other NFL players were critical and questioned his toughness before the extent of the injury was known.

Jones-Drew said he was rooting for Cutler and the Bears, and when Cutler left in the third quarter, Jones-Drew thought it was a good time to make fun of the Florida Gators, whose coach resigned after the season.

"Hey I think the urban meyer rule is effect right now... When the going gets tough........QUIT," Jones-Drew posted on his Twitter page.

Jones-Drew said Wednesday that he wasn't trying to question Cutler's toughness, and he might even send Cutler flowers as a peace offering.

"I'm going to say something like 'Jay, I hope we can still be friends' -- because I knew him before, we came out in the same draft -- 'I hope we can still be friends. No hard feelings. Here's a dozen roses and a teddy bear with a 32 jersey on there,'" Jones-Drew said.

Jones-Drew played all season with a torn meniscus in his left knee, saying there were days he would wake up and not be able to walk. He learned the severity of the injury during training camp -- he basically had bone scraping against bone -- but tried to keep it hidden because he didn't want opponents taking shots at his knee.

Cutler supporters on Twitter responded that Jones-Drew's knee injury kept him out, too.

"My knee injury was totally different than his. That's the problem," Jones-Drew said. "As a player I feel like we should be able to talk about the game. Don't get me wrong, what I said was wrong, and I shouldn't have said it but I did. It was my opinion at the time, and I stated it so I'm not going to back off.

"But our two injuries were totally different. I don't know his pain threshold. I don't know how tough he was, and I did make an opinion without knowing the facts, but a lot of people did as well at the same time."

Jones-Drew said the backlash as a result of his tweet was strong and sometimes extreme. Some wished a catastrophic knee injury on him, and he said he even received death threats.

"I don't think what I did was wrong; I didn't commit a crime," Jones-Drew said. "Some of the stuff I was getting, it was crazy how people were coming at me like I committed a crime or something. I just spoke my mind."

For those who say Jones-Drew is jealous of Cutler and the Bears advancing to the NFC Championship Game, he has no retort.

"I haven't gotten a chance to feel what that's like [to be in a conference championship game]. People can say I'm jealous or envious; I am because I want to be there," Jones-Drew said. "I want to be in that situation where I can be on the field in the NFC Championship Game. I've talked to [Bears running back and good friend] Matt [Forte] about it a lot because it's something I've never done, and I want to be a part of it. I don't think that tweet was out of jealousy or other players' tweets were out of jealousy. It was just players saying how they felt at the time."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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