There was an unprecedented amount of quarterback movement in the NFL on Tuesday. There has never been as many big-name QBs available in free agency as there is with this year’s class, and boy, did they ever find homes quickly.
While names like Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Philip Rivers are off the board, there are still other big-name QBs available on the free-agent market as the official kick off to the new NFL league year opens on Wednesday. There is also another big fish available on the trade market.
Here is a rundown of what big-name quarterbacks have already agreed to deals and which ones are still available.
Nick Foles - Chicago Bears
Foles was reportedly traded from the Jacksonville Jaguars to the Chicago Bears on Wednesday. While there hadn't been many rumblings about Foles' availability lately, the move isn't terribly surprising as Gardner Minshew played a lot as a rookie last season for the Jaguars while Foles was hurt, and he was given the starting job permanently late in the season. Not to mention, Minshew garnered quite a bit of attention while starting, with his popularity being dubbed as "Minshew Mania."
Meanwhile in Chicago, starting QB Mitch Trubisky struggled last season. Foles, who has had a fair bit of success in his career, including the Super Bowl MVP he has on his resume, should get an opportunity to compete for the Bears' No. 1 QB job.
Tom Brady – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
It’s still hard to fathom that Brady was a free agent after spending 20 seasons with the Patriots and delivering them six Super Bowls, but the 42-year-old is now, according to a plethora of reports, expected to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brady will have two of the best receiving options he’s ever had in his career in Pro Bowl wideouts Mike Evans and Chris Godwin
Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints
To no surprise, the longtime Saint has reportedly re-upped with the team on a two-year deal worth $50 million. At 41-years-old, it appears Brees intends to finish his career in New Orleans.
Philip Rivers – Indianapolis Colts
After 16 seasons with the Los Angeles Chargers, Rivers has reportedly signed a one-year, $25 million deal with the Indianapolis Colts. With the addition of Rivers, Jacoby Brissett, who started for the Colts in two of the past three seasons, will presumably move to the bench.
Teddy Bridgewater – Carolina Panthers
It appears that after two seasons of serving as Brees’ backup in New Orleans, Bridgewater will once again be given an opportunity to start in Carolina. Bridgewater, who was once the starting QB of the Minnesota Vikings, is reportedly joining the Panthers on a three-year, $60 million deal. On the heels of their acquisition of Bridgewater, the Panthers have announced that longtime starter Cam Newton is available to be traded.
Ryan Tannehill – Tennessee Titans
Tannehill, who took over as starter after the Titans benched Marcus Mariota and played a big role in the team reaching the 2019 AFC Championship game, has been reportedly rewarded with a four-year, $118 million deal. He, for now at least, appears to the Titans long-term option at quarterback.
Marcus Mariota – Oakland Raiders
Mariota, the man who lost his starting gig to Tannehill, is reportedly joining the now-Las Vegas Raiders. Terms of the contract haven’t been reported, but it seems likely that Mariota begins the season as longtime starter Derek Carr’s backup.
Former Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco has been informed by the Denver Broncos that they are waiving him because of a failed physical designation, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. 2019 second-round pick Drew Lock took over at QB for the Broncos when Flacco was placed on injured reserve last November and played impressively during the stretch.
At 35-years-old and having been on both the Ravens and the Broncos the past two seasons, it seems more likely than not that if Flacco wants to continue his NFL career, he'll be viewed more as a potential backup rather than as a starter.
With new coach Matt Rhule and Bridgewater now in Carolina, Newton finds himself as the odd man out after serving as the Panthers’ starter for the past eight-plus seasons. Newton, a former NFL MVP, is arguably the best quarterback option remaining. He should be able to find another starting gig.
Winston will almost certainly not be returning to Tampa Bay now that the Bucs have reportedly landed Brady. The question surrounding Winston now becomes whether other teams around the league view him as a starting QB. In 2019 he became the first quarterback to throw 30 touchdowns while also throwing 30 interceptions in a single season.
Team to watch
New England Patriots
With Brady reportedly gone and no other proven QB options on the roster, Bill Belichick may be looking to add a big-name to fill the void. It should also be noted that Belichick is considered by some to be a QB whisperer, based on some of the pivots he’s groomed behind Brady over the years.
Los Angeles Chargers
After parting ways with Rivers, the Chargers reportedly were very interested in adding Brady. With neither pivot now on the roster, the Chargers almost certainly are in the market for a starting QB.
Update: The Chargers are reportedly "not expected to sign or trade for a veteran QB" to fill the void left by Rivers and missing out on Brady, and are instead expected to go with Tyrod Taylor, their backup from 2019, as their new starter.
Mitchell Trubisky had a rocky season in 2019 and there have been reports that the Bears could potentially add a QB to, at the very least, challenge Trubisky for the No. 1 job.
Update: The Bears have reportedly acquired Nick Foles from the Jacksonville Jaguars, with Foles likely getting an opportunity to compete with Trubisky for the Bears' No. 1 QB job.
Rumours suggesting that longtime Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is considering retirement seem to arise every off-season, and at 38-years-old and coming off a significant elbow injury, it would seem that the end of Big Ben’s career isn’t far off, anyway. After not getting great quarterback play from the other QBs on their roster after Roethlisberger went down with an injury early last season, it’s conceivable that the Steelers might be looking to add a big name as insurance.
New head coach Ron Rivera hasn’t ruled out the possibility of the Redskins drafting a quarterback with the No. 2 pick in this year’s draft, saying at February’s scouting combine that "everything" was in play for Washington. So even though Washington has Dwayne Haskins, drafted in the first round in 2019, it’s possible that the Redskins could even elect to bring in another quarterback to replace or challenge him in 2020.