Pro Bowl running back Maurice Jones-Drew says he never meant to take a shot at Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler or question his toughness.

The Jacksonville standout tells The Associated Press his tweet comparing Cutler to former Florida coach Urban Meyer was merely a joke — one that clearly backfired.

Jones-Drew says he was rooting for Cutler and the Bears in Sunday's NFC championship game, and when Cutler left in the third quarter, Jones-Drew thought it was the perfect time to poke fun at the Gators.

"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 has received death threats and plenty of ill will from Bears' fans. The Bears have also defended Cutler, who was diagnosed with sprained MCL on Monday.