4. The teams that need another option
All of a sudden, some massive free agent prospects will be out there for the taking, but there simply aren’t going to be any obvious openings.
Cam Newton’s time at Carolina appears to be done, Jameis Winston will likely look for a fresh start somewhere else, and Teddy Bridgewater will be looking for a chair when the music stops.
Assuming that there’s no chance that Tom Brady, Drew Brees or Phil Rivers will sign anywhere to be anything less than the anointed Day One starter, what do you do if you’re the Chicago Bears?
You still have Mitchell Trubisky on the cheap for one more year, but you can’t go through another hopeless season if it’s Week 3 and the light hasn’t turned on.
What do you do if you’re Jacksonville, and you have Nick Foles – and don’t say Gardner Minshew – but need an upgrade?
If you’re Carolina, are you really going to roll with Kyle Allen, and if you’re Tennessee, are you really going to believe in Ryan Tannehill?
With the assumption that a few key teams like Cincinnati and Miami will go the draft route for their quarterbacks, here are the calls on several key quarterbacks.
Matthew Stafford will stay in Detroit
The rumors will keep being out there that he’s on the trading block, but that’s assuming Detroit has a better option. He’d be perfect at Tampa Bay, and Las Vegas might like him if the braintrust really doesn’t believe in Derek Carr, but there’s no real need for any team to go crazy and trade for a quarterback in this market.
Teddy Bridgewater will go to Chicago
Bridgewater might not bring the mobility the Bear coaching staff might want, and there’s a shot at Andy Dalton coming in to be more than just a backup.
Bridgewater won’t find an instant starting spot anywhere, so he’ll either take his chances with a team that drafts a new quarterback – like the Chargers – or he’ll take the money and be offered the shot to compete for the gig in Chicago.
Dak Prescott will go back to Dallas
Where else is he going to go? He’s a good talent who could start for several teams, but who’s going to put up the big dough in this market for him? He’ll stay a Cowboy.
Ryan Tannehill will go back to Tennessee
He’ll want starter money and a starting job somewhere else, but sort of like the Bridgewater situation, there won’t be a whole lot of places willing go break the bank considering the options out there. Assuming the Titans don’t sign Tom Brady or Drew Brees, they hope they have their guy.
Jameis Winston will go to Carolina
The new coaching staff and offensive coordinator Joe Brady will have their bomber. Assuming that Tampa Bay signs Phil Rivers, Winston and his improved vision will get his shot with a team looking to be a big thing in a real hurry.
Cam Newton will go to Las Vegas
He won’t be given the starting job, but he’ll be allowed to compete with Derek Carr. The Panthers won’t wait to make sure Newton’s foot is okay, Newton will look for a new start, and the Raiders will decide in camp between Newton and Carr and then deal the loser in the fight.