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Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

The New York Jets are trading quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to the New Orleans Saints. The news was first reported by NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.

Bridgewater was the last pick of the first round in the 2014 draft. He went 17-11 in two years as Minnesota's starter, despite failing to make the top 20 in DYAR or DVOA in either season. A knee injury in practice in 2016 nearly cost him his career, but he returned to throw two passes late last season. The Jets signed him to a $500,000 contract in free agency and he had played well in the preseason, completing 74 percent of his passes for an 8.3-yard average. The Jets also had Sam Darnold, the third overall draft pick, plus Josh McCown as a veteran backup, so it was hard to see a spot for Bridgewater on the team. The Saints, meanwhile, have immediate Super Bowl aspirations and a starting quarterback who turned 39 in January, but a woeful trio of Tom Savage, Taysom Hill, and J.T. Barrett offered little hope for the present if Drew Brees gets injured, or the future if Brees retires. So the Saints shipped a third-round pick to the Jets for Bridgewater and a sixth.

For the Jets, there's no downside here; they basically bought a 2019 third-rounder for $500,000. The Saints have a few more questions. If Brees returns in 2019, will they be able to re-sign Bridgewater to a deal? And after trading next year's first-rounder to move up for Marcus Davenport, what will their 2019 draft class look like? But at least now they have security and options moving forward at the game's most important position.

In other backup quarterback news, the Packers traded Brett Hundley to the Seahawks for a sixth-round pick. A fifth-round draft pick in 2015, Hundley went 3-6 as a starter in Green Bay with nine passing touchdowns (plus two more rushing) and 12 interceptions. He was expendable after the Packers traded for DeShone Kizer, Cleveland's starter last year. Seattle had no depth behind Russell Wilson except journeyman Austin Davis and seventh-round rookie Alex McGough.

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21 comments, Last at 05 Sep 2018, 10:26am

1 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

I mean the Saints have repeatedly shown that aggressively trading your draft picks is a top-notch strategy for both short- and long-term success, so it's hard to argue with this move.

2 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

Earlier today I was reading and article by Tanier with this as one possible use for Bridgewater; "The Jets find a potential partner among teams who are a year or two away from needing a franchise-caliber starter, like the Patriots, Saints or Chargers. " I was confused by the statement above that the Jets signed him to a contract for $500k, that was actually his signing bonus and his salary is $5m/year. So the statement that they bought a 3rd rounder for $500k is accurate.

3 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

How often does a team sign a new player, then trade him away before the regular season even starts? It seems like it must be a very rare occurrence.

Will be interesting to see what happens in New Orleans. Brees was still great last year, but he's at an age where a major drop off could occur at just about any time. But this doesn't seem like an optimal outcome for Bridgewater, since he might not get a chance to play this year at all. He could go into next offseason still having not having had an opportunity to prove he's really back.

5 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

To the first point, in retrospect it would appear that signing Bridgewater was insurance in case the Jets couldn't get one of the QBs they wanted in the draft. Once they got Darnold, Teddy pretty much had no future in NY.

To the second, I think Bridgewater is a lot better off with the Saints because he's likely to only have to wait 2 years for his chance.

4 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

I was hoping the Jets would have start the beginning of the season, and then bring Darnold along slowly. This is a rebuilding year, they can keep 3 quarterbacks around for part of the season; it's not like the other player getting cut would make a huge difference in the long run. That way the Jets get some wins early on to keep the coaching staff safe, and then trade Bridgewater when a contender's quarterback goes down. This works out alright, but I would have liked a better pick, and I'm sure Teddy wants to start. He could still sign in New England next year when Brady retires, and that's not optimal for the Jets.

6 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

Makes sense for both teams, New Orleans gets a good backup and potential QB of the future, Jets get some value for a surplus asset. The only problem is that this means the Jets are going to be starting McCown in the event that they decide to bring Darnold along slowly. Can the NFL please stop subjecting us to Josh McCown? The man has somehow started 40 games since 2013.

7 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

Nice job by the Jets (which is not something I say often).

I'm confused as to why the Saints didn't offer Bridgewater more than the 500K guaranteed (the jets did) in the offseason though - I get that Bridegwater is risky, but we're talking about a guy who looked like he definitely had the talent to play in the NFL prior to the injury - a $1M signing bonus to secure that seems like a totally reasonable risk - and is significantly less than I think the value of a 3rd rounder is.

@jtr - I think this is a pretty clear sign that the jets don't intend to bring Darnold along slowly.

10 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

Why would the Saints give a 3rd for him? They already traded their 1st next year.

It would seem like the Saints have a window of about 1-3 years with Drew Brees. Shouldn't they be leveraging that to maximize their chance of Super Bowl(s) with him still there? I would think having a 3rd rounder next year would help.

Is Bridgewater good enough to take the Saints to a Super Bowl if Brees gets hurt this year or retires? I'm not sure. Case Keenum and Sam Bradford were both better players on the Vikings than Bridgewater. So I'm not positive that Bridgewater is better than those guys, and guys of that caliber should be available next offseason in the event Brees retires.

16 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

I don't know if I'd go that far, but I find the media-driven angles of Jets must trade Bridgewater.... Team X needs to trade for Bridgewater.... the especially confounding Tanier It's not fair to Teddy AND NFL fans are being robbed of joy if Bridgewater isn't starting somewhere... to be confusing and nauseating.

I must of missed the announcement of Teddy Bridgewater, Franchise Quarterback and Possible Franchise Savior

Seriously....31 teams passed on him just a few months ago. He's had a fairly good pre-season, and we have to go on Bridgewater Trade Watch for 3 weeks. So glad it's over, except this means it's going to be rinse and repeat for the Bob Griffin signing-anticipation marathon.

14 Re: Jets Trading Bridgewater to Saints

Nice to see the difference in approach the Jets have to their new QB (start Darnold, have a career backup behind him) and how the Browns do it (sit Mayfield, have an average and reliable starter start the season).