Teddy Bridgewater’s market value appeared to skyrocket last summer, when he performed well in the preseason and proved he was healthy again after a major 2016 knee injury. The New Orleans Saints were inspired enough to trade a third-round draft pick for him in August, even though he had just one year left on his contract.
But now that Bridgewater is just days away from becoming a free agent, his actual market is shrinking by the week.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are expected to sign quarterback Nick Foles once free agency officially kicks off on Wednesday. The Washington Redskins just agreed to a trade for QB Case Keenum. And the Denver Broncos made a deal for Joe Flacco last month.
Even if Bridgewater does sign elsewhere next week, it will probably make the most sense for him to sign just a one- or two-year deal. That would give him the chance to further prove himself on the field. Bridgewater has started only one game in the past three seasons because of the devastating knee injury he suffered in the summer of 2016, when he tore his ACL and other ligaments and had structural damage.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale
More importantly, it would increase his options the next time around — including a possible return to New Orleans.
In a year or two, maybe Brees will be ready to hang it up. Or maybe the Patriots will be looking for a Tom Brady successor. Or Bridgewater could be reunited with New York Giants coach Pat Shurmur, who was briefly his offensive coordinator with the Vikings, if the Giants decide to move on from Eli Manning. Or maybe he could be reunited with the Vikings themselves if they decide not to re-sign Kirk Cousins when his three-year deal is up.
Who knows for sure, but it’s hard to imagine the market being any leaner than it is right now.
And for that matter, it’s also possible that Bridgewater could just stay put and keep learning under Brees and coach Sean Payton.cheap nfl jerseys china nike
The circumstances aren’t ideal, since Brees is still playing at a high level and hasn’t given any public indication that he is close to retiring. Plus, the Saints have only about $10 million in salary-cap space, with some monster contracts looming for receiver Michael Thomas and others in the coming years. Also, they would lose out on a potential compensatory draft pick for Bridgewater if he stayed.
But if the Saints see Bridgewater as their future at the critical QB position — and if he sees New Orleans as a place where he could thrive for the next decade — they could both make some sacrifices to make it work.
The Saints liked Bridgewater enough that they traded the third-round pick to the New York Jets last August for Bridgewater and a sixth-round pick. Part of their motivation was to secure the backup role behind Brees. But part of it was also to get a closer look at a potential long-term successor.