Ahead of Last Weeks' Preseason Finale, Jets Trade QB Teddy Bridgewater to Saints
Prior to the New York Jets preseason finale against the Philadelphia Eagles, the team struck a deal to send quarterback Teddy Bridgewater along with a 2019 sixth-round draft pick to the New Orleans Saints in exchange for a 2019 third-round draft pick. With rookie Sam Darnold and 39-year-old veteran Josh McCown already establishing themselves as the number one and two quarterbacks on the depth chart, a move for Bridgewater seemed inevitable, especially with his value increasing after a strong showing in the preseason with the Jets.
The 25-year-old Bridgewater signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the New York Jets this past offseason and paid him $1 million as a signing bonus. This puts the Saints on the line for the other $5 million remaining on his one-year contract. However, the quarterback could earn up to $9 million more this year if he meets incentives for playing time, touchdowns, and yards. Bridgewater has not seen the field as a starter since the 2015 season with the Minnesota Vikings due to injuries in 2016 and the emergence of Case Keenum last season.
After dislocating his left knee and tearing multiple ligaments in August 2016, it was without a doubt Bridgewater would not play that season and even the year after that was a question mark for him. Despite the quarterback recovering quicker than expected, he appeared in just one game during the 2017 season in which the Vikings made it to the NFC Championship Game against the Philadelphia Eagles. The once franchise quarterback of the Vikings had been overtaken by Case Keenum who has a spectacular season for Minnesota and this past offseason the team chose to pursue Kirk Cousins in free agency as opposed to resigning Bridgewater.
Now Bridgewater must wait behind future Hall of Famer Drew Brees on the quarterback depth chart for his chance to prove himself as the future of the Saints. Brees, who turns 40 in January, signed a two-year, $50 million deal to remain in New Orleans this past offseason. However, time is bound to eventually catch up to him and the Saints will need to find their next franchise quarterback which is a void that Teddy Bridgewater could potentially fill. With Bridgewater becoming the backup to Drew Brees and Taysom Hill being the team's third quarterback, the Saints parted ways with Tom Savage while trimming the roster down to 53 before the deadline.
While Taysom Hill had a roller coaster preseason for the Saints, New Orleans sees long-term potential for the 28-year-old quarterback who hails from BYU. As for Bridgewater, he played in three preseason games with the Jets producing a 74% on pass completion with 314 yards, two touchdowns, one interception, and a passer rating of 104.7. When Drew Brees decides to hang up the cleats, the Saints will have to decide who will be his replacement. If they choose to resign Bridgewater this offseason it will likely be a battle between him and Hill for the right to succeed Brees in the near-future. But for now, Bridgewater will sit and wait for the potential to play this season and prove himself if the opportunity arises.
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