3 Potential Trade Suitors For Eagles QB Sam Bradford
The Philadelphia Eagles re-signed starting quarterback Sam Bradford to a two-year, $18 million deal this off-season. To the casual observer, that meant the Eagles saw him as their best option moving forward and should 2016 and 2017 go as planned, Bradford could have been the long-term answer under center.
Recent moves are starting to suggest otherwise. After Philly traded up to nab Cleveland’s #2 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, they also revealed their intent to take a quarterback – either California’s Jared Goff or North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz.
While such a move doesn’t automatically mean the Eagles wouldn’t want Bradford to remain as the team’s starter for the next 1-2 seasons, it does paint a clear picture of their wishes for the future.
Suffice to say, Bradford isn’t long for the Eagles and reports are already emerging that he will request a trade.
That’s no shock, as Philly will have a new franchise quarterback in the fold in less than a week and backup Chase Daniel himself will command $7 million per year. Considering Daniel already knows new head coach Doug Pederson’s system from their days together in Kansas City, he most certainly won’t be the odd man out.
That leaves Bradford on the chopping block. At this point, it doesn’t matter if the Eagles wish to trade him; Bradford wants out. And with numerous teams not having their quarterback situations figured out just yet, he could have options.
Let’s take a look at three logical landing spots for the disgruntled star:
This is understandably the most likely landing spot for Bradford. Denver has some cash after Peyton Manning retired and Brock Osweiler fled to Houston, and they also don’t have a quarterback. It’s funny, too, because they just did a trade with the Eagles not too long ago for Mark Sanchez.
It might not make perfect sense to then do another deal for another former Philly quarterback, but Bradford is better than Sanchez and offers more upside. He could be the perfect fit for what Denver does and what they’re asking out of their quarterback, too: manage the game and take care of the football while the defense continues to play at an elite level.
Denver’s long-term plan is likely to snag a falling prospect in the first or second round, but Sanchez can’t be where they stop trying. They have other options, too, but few are as attractive as bringing in Bradford. The real issue is the contract, while guys like Ryan Fitzpatrick or Colin Kaepernick might still be slightly more appealing to John Elway and co.
The Broncos just got done winning a title with a washed up Peyton Manning. If Bradford can be just a little bit better than he was in his first full season back from back-to-back knee injuries, the Broncos could arguably have a steal.
New York Jets
Ryan Fitzpatrick still hasn’t found a home, because he thinks he’s worth more than he is and the Jets refuse to pay him top dollar. He did enjoy a career season in 2015 and almost got Gang Green to the playoffs, but in the season finale he also imploded and arguably cost them that potential trip to post-season play.
It sounds like New York would love to have him back, but if that bridge is indeed burned, the Jets have precious few options. Since they’re not enamored with their own guys currently on their roster (Geno Smith and Bryce Petty), looking elsewhere makes good sense.
New York has been tied to Brian Hoyer and a potential trade for Colin Kaepernick, but so far hasn’t made a move. Bradford is more of a traditional passer than Kaepernick and offers more upside and stability than Hoyer. He’d cost more based on his salary, but he could be the best play. Considering the Jets were a borderline playoff team with Fitzpatrick in 2015, they could very well be a dangerous team in 2016 with Bradford at the helm.
Buffalo is still not sold on Tyrod Taylor. They don’t want to give him a long-term deal and basically either want to bring in competition and/or make him prove himself again in 2016. Both could happen, but they also definitely want nothing to do with their top backup in E.J. Manuel.
Perhaps adding a seasoned veteran like Bradford would be worth the price, although it’d send quite the message with them paying a good chunk of cash just to roster Bradford, yet they refuse to pay Taylor.
Taylor is younger and offers far more upside as a dual threat passer, but the Bills could be in need of a more traditional pocket passer like Bradford. If Rex Ryan can turn their defense into an elite unit, it’s highly arguable they’d be a competent, consistent quarterback away from a deep playoff run. If the Bills think Bradford can fit that label, they could pull the trigger on a deal.
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