Chicago general manager Phil Emery has more of a big-picture plan, and a big-armed experienced quarterback is undoubtedly part of it. That's Cutler.
All that's left now is the negotiating. A big game against Green Bay and another playoff appearance might help stabilize Cutler's bargaining position.
Given that the Bears are 1-7 against Green Bay when Cutler starts and that he has thrown nine touchdowns and 16 interceptions in those starts, a good start would help change perceptions.
It would definitely boost Cutler's Q-rating in Chicago, where a large swath of fans seriously wanted Josh McCown starting the past three games.
Does fan support matter to the real deciders at Halas Hall? No. But it quiets the noise, noise that the Bears admitted has filtered into the locker room.
Cutler will probably be a Bear into the future regardless of how he does this Sunday, but he needs this win for reasons outside of money.
Sadly, for Cutler and the Bears, now it's the defense that limits the Bears' playoff hopes.
But Cutler has to show he can't be the reason the season ends.
Jon Greenberg is a columnist for ESPNChicago.com.