Which QB domino is subsequent to fall? The most recent on the Bears, Texans, 49ers and extra
First it was the Jan. 30 blockbuster swap between the Detroit Lions and Los Angeles Rams — Matthew Stafford for Jared Goff and draft picks. Then, on Thursday, the Philadelphia Eagles traded onetime MVP candidate Carson Wentz to the Indianapolis Colts.
The quarterback carousel is definitely spinning — the query is, who’s subsequent?
A number of groups are out there for a QB. ESPN’s Adam Schefter forecast last month that as many as 18 NFL groups may have new starter subsequent season.
Let’s inspect 10 groups, listed alphabetically, which can be both seeking to improve or discover a new starter. The Jaguars are anticipated to handle quarterback with the No. 1 general choose within the 2021 draft and aren’t on the checklist.
CAR | CHI | DEN | HOU | NE
NO | NYJ | PIT | SF | WSH
2020 starter: Teddy Bridgewater
Barring different quarterbacks changing into obtainable through free company or commerce, the Panthers are down to 2 choices after having missed out on Stafford: They’ll hope the Texans grant Deshaun Watson‘s want to be traded and give you an acceptable package deal or they’ll draft a QB, seemingly with the eighth choose.
The primary possibility is preferable as a result of Watson is a confirmed commodity and could be an incredible match into offensive coordinator Joe Brady’s scheme. That Carolina supplied Bridgewater, the eighth general choose and a fifth-round choose to Detroit for Stafford reveals they’re severe in upgrading the place.
Outdoors of Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence, the opposite high school QB prospects have flaws and certain would not instantly elevate the crew to the playoff stage proprietor David Tepper desires. If neither of those situations performs out, the Panthers are ready to go along with Bridgewater one other yr and improve the expertise round him — primarily the offensive line and tight finish. — David Newton
Rob Ninkovich and Ryan Clark make the case for the Bears pursuing Deshaun Watson.
2020 starter: Mitchell Trubisky
That is most likely GM Ryan Tempo’s final shot to get the quarterback place proper. From Mike Glennon to Trubisky to Nick Foles, the search continues. Tempo won’t be capable of discover a surefire quick starter the place he is selecting within the first spherical (No. 20 general). The truth is, Mel Kiper Jr. projected 5 quarterbacks within the high 15. He does not have one other first-round quarterback after the fifteenth choose.
In Todd McShay’s newest mock draft, he had the Bears buying and selling as much as No. 12 to take Alabama’s Mac Jones. However that is provided that the Bears do not land one of many starters who’re both on the commerce market or wish to be.
If the Jets resolve to maneuver on from Sam Darnold, then maybe he could be intriguing to the Bears as a result of he is on his rookie contract and they might have the selection to train his fifth-year possibility for 2022. Or maybe Tempo is holding out hope the Texans will cave and commerce Watson. The Bears are seemingly caught with Foles as an costly backup, however Tempo stays looking out for a greater resolution. — Rob Demovsky
2020 starter: Drew Lock
The Broncos have a Plan A: Lock is the starter in 2021 and the crew will purchase aggressive backup who can each push and assist him. They may simply go to Plan B in the event that they suppose they’ll do higher than Lock. They dipped their toe within the Stafford commerce dialogue earlier than being informed what they had been providing was nowhere near what the Lions may get from the Rams.
They’ve achieved their due diligence on the quarterbacks who can be obtainable and/or are being shopped by their present groups and can contemplate any and all strikes. And that features what they’ll do with the No. 9 choose within the draft. — Jeff Legwold
Damien Woody explains why he’d wish to see Deshaun Watson on the Broncos.
2020 starter: Deshaun Watson
The Texans have mentioned, publicly and privately, they do not wish to commerce Watson. Nevertheless, they’ve had inside conversations about commerce companions and what the place would look with out Watson, in response to a supply. Regardless, Watson is not taking the crew’s calls, so there hasn’t been any progress towards repairing the connection.
Houston has no incentive to commerce the quarterback they signed to a four-year, $156 million contract extension in September that goes via the 2025 season. The large query is whether or not Watson will sit out if the crew refuses to commerce him. The associated fee could be excessive — he could be fined $95,877 for lacking minicamp, $50,000 for every day of coaching camp he misses and $620,000 — for every preseason recreation he misses — however it might be Watson’s solely selection if he does not wish to play in Houston. — Sarah Barshop
2020 starter: Cam Newton
The Patriots will proceed to discover all of their choices — in free company, the draft (the place they personal the No. 15 choose) and trades. There isn’t a surefire reply proper now. They did not have vital curiosity in Wentz given the monetary dedication, and so they dipped their toe within the Matthew Stafford waters however weren’t going to be gamers on the final asking value.
Top-of-the-line issues they’ve going for them is powerful salary-cap area, so if an sudden alternative presents itself (e.g., Jimmy Garoppolo, Watson and so on.), they’ll pounce. What they will not do is drive it only for the sake of checking the QB field to satisfy a synthetic deadline, at the same time as some within the group wish to have some readability going into free company in a possible aggressive state of affairs to signal a receiver or tight finish.
One may make a case the Raiders’ Marcus Mariota would make sense as a bridge possibility in a modest commerce. Additionally, Newton’s return could be a troublesome promote to followers, however the Patriots aren’t within the place to be closing any doorways proper now. — Mike Reiss
2020 starter: Drew Brees
The Saints will want a beginning quarterback for the primary time in 15 years as soon as Brees proclaims his retirement. They’ve made it clear they wish to re-sign free agent Jameis Winston to compete with fellow backup Taysom Hill for the gig. And coach Sean Payton has repeatedly expressed confidence in each contenders, insisting New Orleans’ subsequent beginning QB is already “in the building.”
It stays to be seen whether or not Winston will draw extra curiosity on the open market than he did final yr. However he selected the Saints partly as a result of he anticipated this chance, so a crew must make a fairly attractive supply to lure him away. It is also potential the Saints may contemplate different choices through commerce, free company or the draft. However all of these avenues appear unlikely contemplating they do not choose till twenty eighth within the draft and have extreme salary-cap limitations. — Mike Triplett
2020 starter: Sam Darnold
The Jets are in a holding sample as they proceed to guage Darnold, the commerce market and the highest quarterbacks within the draft.
The timing of a possible commerce is a fragile steadiness. In the event that they wait too lengthy to decide on Darnold, they run the danger of shedding suitors, who could flip elsewhere. With Carson Wentz off the desk, quarterback-needy groups are ready for the Jets to make up their thoughts. In the event that they’re supplied a excessive second-rounder or low first-rounder, the Jets most likely would transfer Darnold and draft Zach Wilson with the second general choose. — Wealthy Cimini
2020 starter: Ben Roethlisberger
The Steelers wish to add one other quarterback to the room — unbiased of Roethlisberger’s 2021 standing. The kind of quarterback, although, will rely on Roethlisberger’s future with the group. If Roethlisberger returns on a diminished 2021 wage, the crew can afford to take one other developmental quarterback to study behind him and spherical out a room of developmental gamers in Mason Rudolph and former first-rounder Dwayne Haskins Jr.
The probably route is drafting a quarterback within the third or fourth spherical of the 2021 draft, much like their strategy in taking Rudolph within the third spherical of the 2017 draft or Joshua Dobbs within the fourth of 2016. If Roethlisberger retires, although, the necessity turns into extra pressing.
In that case, Rudolph turns into the front-runner for the beginning job, however the crew may use among the area freed up by a Roethlisberger departure to lure a mid-level veteran like Tyrod Taylor to Pittsburgh for a one-year deal to compete with Rudolph. Rudolph confirmed progress below the course of quarterbacks coach-turned-offensive coordinator Matt Canada, and the group believes he may lead the franchise if he continues to indicate the event displayed within the Week 17 loss to the Cleveland Browns. — Brooke Pryor
Stephen A. Smith sees Jimmy Garoppolo beginning for the 49ers subsequent season, however Max Kellerman makes a case for Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan.
2020 starter: Jimmy Garoppolo
Regardless of persistent hypothesis, the 49ers are standing by Garoppolo. That place appears more and more unlikely to alter, save for the potential of 1 main improvement. Coach Kyle Shanahan has indicated it will take an apparent improve to spend very important sources and transfer on from Garoppolo. The Texans’ Deshaun Watson is the one doubtlessly obtainable quarterback who clearly meets that standards and the Niners are monitoring that state of affairs carefully as Houston makes an attempt to reconcile with its estranged signal-caller.
However the 49ers’ consolation stage with Garoppolo is excessive sufficient they’ll afford to be affected person and wait it out. If the Texans acquiesce to Watson and deal him, the Niners are prone to be concerned. Wanting that, the extra sensible strategy for San Francisco stays hanging on to Garoppolo and spending a comparatively early draft choose and/or signing an achieved veteran free agent to bolster their quarterback depth within the occasion of one other Garoppolo harm. — Nick Wagoner
2020 starter: Alex Smith
Washington continues to discover all quarterback choices because it appears to be like to improve. The crew feels assured Kyle Allen and Taylor Heinicke may assist, however they don’t seem to be considered as long-term options. That is why Washington checked out doubtlessly obtainable quarterbacks, from Sam Darnold to Marcus Mariota.
One crew supply mentioned there have been 5 quarterbacks Washington needed to discover deeper, though they did not expose these names. They do not wish to mortgage an excessive amount of to acquire one — not with key holes nonetheless on offense. It is also potential they carry again Alex Smith, who hasn’t publicly mentioned he desires to play once more, however indicators level to that want.
And one supply mentioned if Washington cannot improve, it may go along with Smith, Allen and Heinicke whereas bolstering the expertise round them — after which making an attempt to pursue this place once more subsequent offseason. With their protection — plus some extra offensive weapons — Washington feels this group may win them 9 or 10 video games. But when the crew goes in that course, it is onerous to think about them desirous to convey Smith again at his cap hit of $24.4 million. It is also unknown if Smith desires to proceed to play in Washington. — John Keim