After a week of free agency, two quarters of the Hall of Fame have changed teams, but two QBs that were recently the top picks in the standings are still out of work.
During the 2019 season, 57 different quarters started to play, so it is imperative to know the depth of the position. But if we have learned anything from the moves so far, the relationship of fit and candor with a quarterback is just as important as the level of talent.
Here are the top five free agent quarterback adjustments that changed locations in 2020.
1) Tom Brady
Former team: New England Patriots
New team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tom Brady in Tampa Bay is the best candidate of all shifts in new locations, and that has more to do with the type of weapons available to him with the Buccaneers than anything else.
Brady has 120 successful close-range touchdown passes since 2010, most from any quarterback. It’s more than Matt Ryan and Aaron Rodgers combined. Last season, however, Brady threw only two tight ends, a career low as a starter.
In Tampa Bay, Brady inherits a tight group with 29 scores since O.J. Howard was drafted in 2017. He is the fourth best player in the NFL. Expect this ranking to increase.
Howard and Cameron Brate are one of the best tight duos in the NFL, and no quarterback is better placed to enjoy them than Brady. And that doesn’t even take into account the receiving duo of Chris Godwin and Mike Evans – the best wide-range tandem that Brady has ever had and among the best in the league.
A season of 4000 yards and 35 touchdowns for Brady is at stake in 2020.
2) Philip Rivers
Former team: Los Angeles Chargers
New team: Indianapolis Colts
Rivers signed a one-year, $ 25 million contract to Indy after a slowing season with the Chargers, throwing 23 touchdowns and 20 steals in 2019. Rivers turned 38 in December and his best football behind him. He is still thrown from his back foot and his ability to cope with pressure has worsened as the strength of his arms has diminished.
And that’s why it makes sense that he went from playing behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league to one of the best with the Colts.
Eric Ebron is gone, so it’s one less weapon in Indianapolis, but Rivers will be more upright and it’s a big improvement. He will also have Colts head coach Frank Reich who will guide him again. When Reich was in San Diego from 2013 to 2015, Rivers played some of his best football games.
3) Teddy Bridgewater
Former team: New Orleans Saints
New team: Carolina Panthers
Bridgewater deserves its $ 63 million three-year contract. After all, he was 5-0 last season and has won 16 of his last 22 starts. He is a bona fide NFL starter who volunteered his time as a replacement. He’s just not an elite starter, so expectations have to be tempered.
His division is full of good shifts who have been MVP candidates and have taken their teams to the Super Bowl. Bridgewater did neither. In fact, Bridgewater has never thrown more than 14 touchdown passes in a season. It’s a good month for NFC South rivals Drew Brees and Tom Brady.
The Panthers haven’t reached the playoffs since 2017, and you shouldn’t expect that to change just because they will start a new quarter.
The correspondence with Joe Brady as an offensive coordinator, who coached Bridgewater in New Orleans two years ago, is good. Bridgewater is able to play its best football, but its cap is lower than that of other quarters that have moved.
4) P.J. Walker
Former team: Houston Roughnecks (XFL)
New team: Carolina Panthers
Walker is best known to football fans as the only good quarterback in the XFL.
He was so good that he is now in the NFL as the first XFL player to sign in the league. It was his work before his stint with the Roughnecks that could be the precursor to future success.
Walker played for the Panthers’ new head coach, Matt Rhule, at Temple, where he started Rhule’s 28 wins. Walker’s number one target at Temple was Robby Anderson, who has just signed with Carolina as a free agent to add even more familiarity.
In the XFL, Walker has thrown 15 touchdowns in five Roughnecks games and is an explosive athlete, so if he can do as well as Bridgewater, don’t be surprised if Walker pushes for the Carolina start.
5) Marcus Mariota
Former team: Tennessee Titans
New team: Las Vegas Raiders
Mariota says all the right things and publicly states that it is primarily a backup.
But follow the money. Raider coach Jon Gruden never seemed to be sold on Derek Carr, but he loved Mariota when he graduated from college, as did Raiders general manager Mike Mayock.
You do not believe me? Look at Mariota’s contract. This is similar to the contract that the New Orleans Saints gave to Bridgewater last year. At two years worth $ 17.6 million, Mariota has signed a high-end backup contract. He could be worth $ 37.5 million with incentives on games played and wins.
You do not allocate this amount to a deep quarterback unless you anticipate that it could become a starter.