Former NFL Player Jay Cutler Sparks Outrage With Bear Hunting Photo

Criticism is pouring in for former NFL player Jay Cutler, who sparked outrage by posting a photo on social media with a bear he hunted and killed.

Despite being recognized as one of the top 100 Chicago Bears of all time in 2019, Cutler's actions have drawn harsh criticism, as they contradict any perceived connection to the animal that inspired the name of the National Football League team.

After proudly displaying the 'trophy' from a bear hunt he undertook in Big Sky Country, Montana, the 40-year-old retired quarterback has faced intense backlash from online communities.

The post features Cutler wearing camouflage attire, including a cap, while crouching behind a bear. He holds the bear's head up to the camera in the photo.

The caption accompanying the image states: "MT bear hunt in the books. @outsiderig Heading home to get some summer ale @gratisbeer."

As reported by Outsider, the bear is a "cinnamon black bear or cinnamon phase black bear."

The comments section quickly filled with outraged animal lovers expressing their disgust over Cutler's post.

One user commented: "How can you even be proud of this?"

"I'm a huge fan of you Jay. But I'm not a huge fan of killing bears at all, I understand the reasons to do so for population control conservation."

"It just seems silly to brag on social media about killing something you can't take out with your hands or a blade. Be humble. I don't see bears taking us down and posting it on their instagram," another added.

A third wrote: "As a Montanan, I would like to know where you hunted because it doesn't look like a black bear to me. "Grizzlies are federally protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and killing them can come with a fine of up to $50,000, the loss of a hunting license, or even jail time."

"Unless you're feeding the Poor I don't see the point of this smh to show your manhood?!? That you fight with guns against a defenseless animal just minding their own business in their habitat. You hunters are real manly," another added.

And a final stated: "Welp, unfollowing you now."

Nevertheless, some users presented the argument that hunting becomes necessary when a particular animal species experience overpopulation.

As outlined in the Montana Government's 'Black bear hunting regulations' document, hunters must first pass a 'Black Bear Identification test' and obtain a license before engaging in black bear hunting. Additionally, there is a requirement to report any black bear harvest within 48 hours.

Specific rules are in place regarding the methods and instruments used for hunting, as well as restricted areas where hunting is prohibited.

In response to those who expressed their disapproval of the bear post, Cutler posted a photo of a rainbow.

The caption states: "If you didn't like the bear post, here is a rainbow to calm you down. You're welcome. Go drink @gratisbeer, that will help also."