Once again, nearing the end of the regular season, teams have already started to think about who will be under center for their squad next season. General managers will look at free agents and the crop of quarterbacks coming into the NFL in the 2022 draft. There have been a lot of QB's taken early in the draft and don't work out for one reason or another. Some quarterbacks like Russell Wilson and Aaron Rodgers have expressed their feelings about staying with their current teams.
We'll certainly see QB faces in different places once the 2022 season starts. Which players will be on the move? And what teams decide to hang on to their quarterback despite some negative backlash from around the league? Let's go through the teams that will likely have new quarterbacks taking the snaps come next September.
courtesy of NFL.com
Miami Dolphins - We've heard rumors all season long that DeShaun Watson may be on his way to South Florida. However, since Tua came back from injury the Dolphns have won 7 straight games and find themselves in the playoff picture after a horrific start to the season. Now most people would agree that Watson is a better player than Tua so it makes perfect sense to bring in a top tier QB to a team that has all the pieces to make a legit run at the Super Bowl. So will the Phins stick with Tua the game manager or try and trade for Watson the game wrecker?
Pittsburgh Steelers - Big Ben, has for the most part already retired from football. The Steelers are 99.9% sure that Roethlisberger will hang it up once their season has concluded. Which means Mike Tomlin and company need to figure out which quarterback can potentially lead this team into the post season and beyond. If Aaron Rodgers decides to leave the Green Bay Packers, I think the Steelers would be a solid landing spot for the reigning MVP. Rodgers clearly has a lot left in the tank as he is making another run at league MVP.
Cleveland Browns - We've seen a lot of Baker Mayfield since he was the number one overall draft choice in 2018. It doesn't appear that Baker is the type of quarterback who can consistently help his offense move downfield. He's had good moments but the bad decisions he continues to make are somewhat alarming. I don't think the Browns will part ways with Mayfield just yet. Even though the Browns are a successful running team, there's going to come a time where the QB has to throw the ball on nearly every play. I'm not sure the Browns organization have a better plan in place but they ought to start looking if they haven't already. A couple names that come to mind would be Russell Wilson because much like LeBron James, if you bring a championship to Cleveland you are solidfied in royalty forever. Cleveland could go in another direction like Marcus Mariota or Nick Foles. Two experienced veteran quarterbacks. But is that really an upgrade? Looks like Baker will be the Browns starter in 2022. But should he be? You answer the question!
Houston Texans - Houston has had a problem all season long. The Texans drafted quarterback Davis Mills as a contingency plan in case Tyrod Taylor didn't work out. Taylor looked really good playing QB for the Texans in the beginning of the season but then the injury bug struck again coupled with his lack of availibility, will definitely be held against Taylor as the Texans contemplate if they go with the veteran Taylor, the rookie Davis Mills or another QB altogether. I think there's a good chance the Texans trade for Jimmy Garapollo who's had success and experience in the playoffs. Perhaps simple play calling like hitch routes and slants along with a good runnig game would be enough to kick start a new look Texans team.
Denver Broncos - Head coach Vic Fangio called upon Teddy Bridgewater to be the teams starting quarterback with Drew Locke as the back up. The Broncos had some good games like their victory over the Cowboys in Dallas and some cruddy games like a home loss against the Philadelphia Eagles 30 - 13. Teddy B. got hurt again this season and Drew Locke was next up. I'd say Denver is certain that Drew Locke will not be the future starting QB after another poor performance against the Raiders last weekend. Denver has weapons like Jerry Jeudy, Tim Patrick, Noah Fant, Courtland Sutton and a nice one-two punch at running back with Melvin Gordon and Javonte Williams. The backbone of this team is their suffocating defense who is on the field way too long every game and there's only so much a defense can do to stop the opponent from scoring. The Broncos need a new quarterback and again, Aaron Rodgers name comes up as he'd be exactly what the Broncos need to become Super Bowl bound. If not Rodgers then they'll have to lower their standards by perhaps trading for Tyler Huntley who has filled in nicely for Lamar Jackson in Baltimore. Maybe even Gardner Minshew who despite having a losing record as the Jaguars QB, has shown some unique ability in various aspects of the game. Maybe Denver goes after that Rah Rah guy that Minshew is!
Washington Football Team - Taylor Heinicke clearly isn't the answer for Washington. The kid can barely see over the line of scrimmage. The WFT does have talent despite a significant let down on the defensive side of the ball. They have a good head coach in Ron Rivera and some nice position pieces on the field. Where will the WFT go to find their new quarterback? I doubt Heinicke will get another chance at the starting job. The Ryan Fitzpatrick experiment failed before launch which left coach Rivera no choice but to go with their second year starter. I think that Washington may be looking at one of the college prospects coming out in 2022. I can see Washington drafting and grooming a young quarterback to go along with this young talented roster. Names you'll hear are Malik Willis, Matt Corral, Spencer Rattler and Kenny Pickett to name a few. I don't see the WFT attracting any quarterbacks to come and play in the nation's capitol. Look for this team to draft a rookie quarterback and hope for the best.
New York Giants - For some reason, upper management still wants Daniel Jones to be the teams quarterback of the future. If that's going to happen then they'll need to protect Jones better with a solid offensive line and regain the run game which was supposed to carry this team along with a strong defense. But when your offense is going 3 and out and Daniel Jones is turning over the football constantly, the defense gets winded early in the game and get taken advantage of as the time of possession in Giants games are usually in their opponents favor. It appears as if Daniel Jones will get one more crack at the starting job to prove he is indeed the teams future. However, if the Giants want to get New York City rocking again, they'll have to make a splash at the quarterback position. I doubt the Giants will spend a high draft pick on a QB so if they decide to move on from Danny Dimes it will likely be for a current player in the league. I said make a splash! The Giants should do everything in their power to get Russell Wilson. He and his wife are big time celebreties so playing in New York as opposed to Seattle should automatically enhance the lifestyle they are accustomed to.
Carolina Panthers - What a disaster this quarterback situation had become after week 4 of the regular season. The Panthers started out 3 - 0 to start the year and newly acquired QB Sam Darnold was looking good. Then they took a major dose of reality as Darnold had problems performing when Christian McCaffery went down. Darnold got hurt and benched in favor of P.J. Walker who didn't do much better. In a last moment of desperation, the Panthers brought Cam Newton back to Carolina. Cam returned to the field but left his Superman outfit back in the past. He simply isn't the QB he was when he won the MVP in 2015. And we can't expect him to be that guy again. The Panthers may stick with Darnold for another season because the other options are limited. Would head coach Matt Rhule bring in Mitch Trubisky who has shown that he can play ball at this level. His problem is consistency and not being able to read the defense as he also has difficulties going through his progressions. I know you're thinking to yourself "Mitch Trubisky?" but he does have talent. He simply needs a coach who can fix these issues.