NFL trade deadline


Joe Glorioso | Wikimedia Commons

Jeremy Dobin

With the Super Bowl in the rear-view mirror, the NFL off-season is officially here. With free agency decisions looming, possible trades in the works and the NFL Draft approaching, the rumors are swirling.

The Quarterback position is regarded as the most important in North American sports. Two of the league’s top quarterbacks could switch teams. There is heavy speculation that superstar Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens will get traded after a long contract dispute with the Ravens. It’s plausible that Jackson will get traded to the Atlanta Falcons or the New York Jets, with the Miami Dolphins being a wild card trade destination.

Former back-to-back Most Valuable Player and all-time great Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers may also find himself on a new team. It has been rumored for a long time that Rodgers and the Packers have been drifting apart, and there are teams waiting in the wings for an opportunity to acquire the former Super Bowl MVP. Like previous years, these stories will likely be more rumor than fact, and Rodgers will stay put in Green Bay.

Jackson and Rodgers are not the only quarterbacks in the quarterback cycle this year. Former Las Vegas Raider Derek Carr is a highly coveted free agent after getting released earlier this month. Additionally, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is viewed as a viable free agency target for teams in need of a quarterback or some insurance at the position.

Some teams like the New York Jets are rumored to be weighing the possibility of all the quarterbacks mentioned, thus complicating the process and making it even more intriguing to see who will end up where. It is likely that Carr will be dealt to the New Orleans Saints and Jimmy Garoppolo will land with the Washington Commanders.

The process of the NFL Draft has become a season within itself as there is heavy speculation leading up to it throughout pro days, the Draft Combine and individual team visits.

Ohio State University’s C.J. Stroud, University of Kentucky’s Will Levis, University of Florida’s Anthony Richardson and University of Alabama’s Bryce Young headline the highly touted quarterback prospects. We might see the four quarterbacks taken within the first 10 picks.

There is a rare anticipation in this year’s NFL Draft; the Chicago Bears currently hold the number one overall pick but already have their franchise quarterback in Justin Fields. This past season Fields completed 60.4% of his passes with 17 touchdowns, rushed for 1,143 yards and scored 8 touchdowns with his legs.

However, the Bears are rumored to be interested in selecting Alabama’s Young.

The rarity of the situation is twofold; either the Bears trade Justin Fields and select Bryce Young or trade the pick, which has only happened 12 times since 1967.

There is of course the possibility that the Bears keep Fields and the pick and select a talented non-QB prospect such as defensive tackle Jalen Carter out of the University of Georgia, which is what the Bears will probably do.

The excitement of the NFL off-season is part of what makes football a year-round sport. It will be interesting to see how the dominoes fall, and how the landscape of the league is altered.