Here's how the Broncos' Joe Flacco trade could affect the 2019 QB market
With Flacco headed to Denver, we forecast what awaits Case Keenum, Nick Foles and other big names
While the Case Keenum for a more expensive, perhaps less impressive signal-caller, it's not just Denver that will be affected by the big-name deal.is that Elway is simply swapping current Broncos starter
The Ravens, of course, will move forward with Lamar Jackson entrenched as their starter. And several other quarterbacks around the league, from Keenum to Nick Foles to Eli Manning, have reason to pay close attention now that the 2019 market has been reshaped. Here's a forecast of just how things might play out in the wake of the Flacco trade:
This is the man most directly impacted by the deal, obviously. Just a year after signing a two-year, $36 million deal as Elway's answer to a revolving door at QB, Keenum is set to either be traded or released. The early favorite among potential landing spots has to be the New York Giants, considering coach Pat Shurmur was Keenum's offensive coordinator during the quarterback's magical 2017 season with the Minnesota Vikings. That, of course, would require the G-Men to part with 38-year-old Eli Manning, which seems unlikely but not impossible. Who's to say the Jacksonville Jaguars couldn't also be a destination? They're all in on pursuing a new starter, and Jags offensive coordinator John DeFilippo said before leaving Minnesota that Keenum has "that 'it' factor." Otherwise, maybe a return to the Houston Texans, who need a Deshaun Watson backup, makes some sense.
He might be the safest among all players "affected" by the Flacco deal, considering Shurmur and the Giants have given the impression he'll still be around in 2019. But it's not as if New York won't have several alternative -- and intriguing -- options. For one, if Keenum is available as a free agent, why not try to land him on a contract similar to his short-term Denver deal, draft a long-term successor and hope one of them works? It's a higher-upside plan than rolling with Manning. If Keenum's not the Giants' cup of tea, Nick Foles arguably still makes more sense than Eli as a veteran stopgap. How about this for a scenario: New York steals Foles from Jacksonville, then sends Manning to the Jaguars (and old friend Tom Coughlin) for a mid-round draft pick?
His name might've been the most talked-about among QBs in the wake of the Flacco deal, and while it's true that Denver finding "their guy" limits an already scarce starting-QB market for Foles, the Broncos' move for Flacco also takes another arm off the radar of needy teams. In other words, anticipated suitors -- like the Jaguars -- now have one less option with Flacco likely off the board. It's also pretty safe to say that Foles shouldn't draw a ton of free-agent competition from Keenum, who offers considerably less upside (and big-game experience). Really, Foles' situation looks about the same: Barring a surprise team axing a well-known starter, it's basically Jacksonville, the Giants and the Washington Redskins that look like legitimate landing spots.
Unless the Miami Dolphins do an about-face and decide they want to compete in 2019, Bridgewater's market as a mid-tier free agent shouldn't be impacted too much by Flacco's move, since Miami works as a possible landing spot and doesn't figure to enter a bidding war for Foles. That said, if the Dolphins intend to go stopgap at QB, you wonder if they wouldn't consider Keenum, thus eliminating a prime starting opportunity for Teddy.
We already know Washington expects its starter todue to complications from a leg injury, but the Flacco deal raises several questions while answering a few others. Firstly, while some D.C.-area media reported Flacco would not be wearing burgundy and gold, it's now confirmed. But now Washington is still in need of a Smith replacement, and that means not only Foles but now Keenum could be in their sights, either as mid- to long-term starters or placeholders for a first-round pick.
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