Quarterback Carousel

Oh, the offseason. I know football is technically still going on but when your heart out of the running NFL Playoffs just become an excuse to give up on your new years resolutions.

This offseason has the potential to possibly rival last in terms of sheer movement with some big names looking to change cities. There are a few Quarterbacks I’ll mention that most likely will resign to their current teams, but it’s just way more fun to speculate always.

Lamar Jackson

For me personally, Lamar Jackson is the most intriguing pending free agent the NFL has had since Tom’s venture to Tampa. Lamar has just been shy of elite with playoff wins being his only massive flaw. He has a 4.9% big-time throw rate since 2019, putting him at 16 against qualifying quarterbacks.

What Lamar may lack in the air he more than makes up for on the ground. Although you need an athletic quarterback to traditionally succeed in the league you’ll need to find a very specific system and coaching staff that would accept and embrace Lamar’s skillset. The Ravens did what they could with Lamar for a while but the lack of real receiving talent paired with injuries just saw the Ravens underperform each season.

I think Lamar could succeed in a few locations. If Seattle truly wanted to move on from Geno (a fellow pending free agent) I could see them trying to snag Lamar considering their division. An edited photo recently came out of Lamar in a Commander’s jacket, another extremely plausible situation. I just hope where ever Lamar ends up they have a true wide receiver for him to throw to.

Tom Brady

How the hell is Tom still going? I mean seriously, this guy is absolutely going to be playing at 50. I don’t see the large pool of teams lining up to pay Tom a boatload of cash like when he ended his time in New England, but it’s easy to already see the wheels turning for some franchises. The most likely scenario is he rejoins former OC Josh McDaniels in Las Vegas just due to the teams timetable and recent news about Derek Carr finding a new home.

Tom still has some heat left in the tank but that alone is no longer an instant Super Bowl formula. This past year with Tampa was tough to watch at times and although he can still kick off a nice 5 touchdown game, his inability to take a hit and lack of basic human movement make me think time has finally caught Tom.

Tom did come out recently and say he was spending some time before making a formal decision. To be completely transparent I just hope he doesn’t return to the Bucs or the Patriots. I’m a sucker for chaos.

Trey Lance

An absolutely delightful situation has sprung in San Francisco with the emergence of Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy leading the Niners to the NFC Championship Game. Purdy has been exactly what San Fran needs in a quarterback to be successful which leaves the door wide open for another team to make a move for the former NDSU Bison.

Lance was taken third overall in 2021 and although there were some flashes, he’s done nothing to help his case that he should be the team’s starter. After an injury this year Jimmy G stepped in and the team didn’t miss a beat. Even worse for Lance is the cheap contract of Purdy, the next QB in line to prove that the 49ers system will function with literally any quarterback who has a pulse and can hand the ball off to Samuel or McCaffrey.

For me personally, I’d love to see Lance leave San Fran for an opportunity. The Lions are an interesting spot, especially with most discussions swirling around what they should do for the position in the upcoming draft. Tampa Bay is also an interesting landing spot considering they’ll most likely lose Brady this offseason with only Kyle Task on their depth chart.

Derek Carr

I have to believe that Carr is going to land on his feet for my own sanity. When Josh McDaniels was selected as the new Head Coach for the Raiders you just had to know that Carr was on a short lease. The team brought in Davante Adams and led the league in rushing, but the offense never felt like it was going to be enough to save Carr in Vegas.

There are a few interesting landing spots for Carr that seem plausible. The Jets are in somewhat of a QB limbo with Zach Wilson being a borderline bust so bringing in Carr would make them an instant playoff contender. The Colts are also looking for their next Quarterback with the Matt Ryan experiment most likely coming to an end.

If you remove Lamar from this list, Carr is probably the most “Win Now” type of guy on this list barring your feelings about Tom Brady. I don’t think a team hands him the keys to a massive deal, but look for Carr to land on his feet in a decent situation this offseason.

Jimmy Garoppolo

Jimmy G is currently injured but could still return for the 49ers if they make it past the Eagles next weekend, an interesting situation I can’t wait to see play out. I don’t foresee them benching Purdy for Jimmy as of this second in time but I do see them finally deciding to move on from Garoppolo in the offseason.

If the Jets are looking for a serviceable ball distributor, there are few as consistent as Jimmy G. I’ve always felt like Garoppolo isn’t going to win you a game but he’s one of the few guys who absolutely won’t lose you the game.

He’s a bridge guy, so which teams need a bridge guy right now? The Jets could be in the market if they trust their team but another name I do like for this situation is the Patriots. A nice return home if the Pats don’t believe in Mac Jones could be in play as well. I also think that if the Ravens miss out on Lamar, Jimmy G is the perfect quarterback to bridge between Jackson and their first-round selection of Florida’s Anthony Richardson. 😉

Carson Wentz

I believe with all of my heart we are finally entering the end of the “Carson Wentz is an NFL Starter” phase, a sad era to jump into as a fan of the sport. Wentz is a gamer but since leaving Philly he really hasn’t found a footing in success. Indy was a speed bump and the Commanders have already named Sam Howell their starter next year, a move done this early to just say that they have moved on from Wentz.

I don’t see Carson getting a lot of QB1 offers this off-season. I don’t see anyone trading for that contract either, leading me to assume that there’s a possibility Wentz is cut. I don’t see him getting a starting gig again unless there’s a Geno Smith-type resurgence, but teams like the Texans and the Jaguars may be in play for very different reasons.

Dougie Fresh has done wonders in Jacksonville and could bring in Wentz as the primary backup to Trevor Lawrence. The Texans are a joke and could bring in Wentz to back up whichever rookie they plan on ruining. All in all, we have seen the last of Wentz as a true starter…unless the Titans get frisky. Then, anything can happen.

Gardner Minshew

For the love of God can we please get Gardner Minshew a starting job in the NFL? He stole our hearts in Jacksonville before the team took Trevor Lawrence (an obvious selection sadly) and won us back over with his dedication to just being the best member of the Eagles he could be.

Minshew would need to be signed to a team with ready competition because I don’t see a franchise right now breaking down the door to start the Washington product on Sundays, leaving a few teams to my speculative wheel of QB changes.

The Titans, Vikings and Packers all come to mind instantly for teams that may benefit from a healthy dose of competition. Malik Willis looked bad in the small attempts the team gave him but they just have to move on from Ryan Tannehill. Kirk Cousins is a perennial top-10 QB but it would appear the team has a cap they continue to set for themselves. If Aaron Rodgers does leave the Packers, do you really trust Jordan Love? Bringing in Minshew could spark that competition and give the Packers a starting QB moving forward. Who knows, all I want is a shot for Minshew.

Aaron Rodgers

He HAS to retire, right? I mean the man just FEEEEELS done with the sport of football. As amazing as he is, I’m just mentally prepared for the Packers to have a new quarterback next year even if Rodgers sticks around. If A A RON does want to kick the tires on a new team, I promise you he will have a home.

The Colts need to find their QB of the future, but Rodgers would be next on their long list of old guys who outstayed their welcome at their current team. I could also see Rodgers heading to the Jets, a team that needs to add serious talent at that position to match the rest of their roster.

Also…again…the Titans could be in play here. Who knows.

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