Overly bold NFL free agency predictions? Yes please. We’re staring down an extremely unpredictable free agency period, in which the quarterback class especially shouldn’t fail to shock and awe. We have veterans, youth and everything in between to scratch that quarterback itch for teams across the league. In a special edition of The Turf Monster, I’m writing out some quarterback free agency dominoes this offseason that could reshape the league for years to come. Buckle up, some of these picks are gonna get spicy.
Tom Brady signs with Indianapolis, who trades Jacoby Brissett to Chicago
This is the big one. Tom Brady’s free agency has bred endless speculation. I have him going to Indy, a team boasting a massive war chest of money to spend and draft picks to utilize. They sign Brady to a massive deal and build around him, fully committing to a window of two years to win a Super Bowl. Brady is given the chance to do it without Bill Belichick. The Colts in turn offload quarterback Jacoby Brissett to Chicago, who brings him in as veteran competition who can push the struggling Mitch Trubisky in training camp.
Philip Rivers signs with Tampa Bay, who lets Jameis Winston walk. Winston signs with New England.
Jameis Winston is my favorite player in the NFL. He just doesn’t care about what you think. You want 33 touchdowns in a season? Take 30 interceptions with them. Winston’s last season likely took a mental toll on Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians. Arians decides on a safer veteran in Phillip Rivers, aiming to capitalize on Tampa’s offensive firepower, led by wide receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. New England sees an opportunity and signs the erratic Winston to a short-term deal. Bill Belichick will try to coach out the turnovers, but will likely age an extra five years in one season trying to deal with Winston’s gunslinger attitude. He’s a real boom-or-bust candidate in New England.
Los Angeles signs Teddy Bridgewater, and New Orleans signs Marcus Mariota to a cheap backup deal.
Los Angeles still believes they can contend with the right guy under center. They make a move for Teddy Bridgewater, who provides stability and youth at the most important position. New Orleans picks up Marcus Mariota as the backup to Drew Brees, aiming to provide him the stability he never had in Tennessee. Brees and head coach Sean Payton can groom Mariota to be the quarterback of the future in New Orleans, and provide upside as a backup if Brees goes down.
Tennessee re-signs Ryan Tannehill, but also makes a move for Saints gadget quarterback Taysom Hill.
Tennessee isn’t built like most NFL teams. They boast a tough-as-nails, bowling ball-style offensive roster headlined by Derrick Henry and A.J. Brown. Tannehill’s consistency last season opened things up for Henry, who is the engine for this offense. Taysom Hill provides some extra bulk, trickery and insurance for Mike Vrabel, who spent last season cementing himself as one of the more clever coaches in the league. He’ll put Hill to great use.
And there we have it. Free agency is roughly a week away, and I for one can’t wait to see the fireworks fly. May your team of choice spend wisely.