NFL QB’s – Which way will the dominos fall?

Michael Gaither

One of ESPN’s leading football insiders, Adam Shefter, has already predicted major turnover at the quarterback position in the NFL, stating “There are roughly 10 QBs locked into starting jobs for Opening Day of the 2021 NFL season. This is expected to be an unprecedented offseason of QB movement. My Over/Under of teams changing QBs this off-season is 18. I’ll go with the over.” It’s an understatement to say that there’ll be plenty of interesting things happening this offseason. To make things a little more enticing, let’s predict the starting quarterbacks for all 32 teams heading into the 2021 NFL season. 

Arizona Cardinals: Kyler Murray – Kyler Murray has played good football in his first two seasons since becoming the number one overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft after winning the Heisman trophy at the University of Oklahoma. The Arizona Cardinals have no intentions of giving up on Kyler Murray and he will ultimately sign an extension with them in the next year or so.

Atlanta Falcons: Matt Ryan – Matt Ryan is the starting quarterback as of right this momentum and the Falcons may draft his replacement in this year’s upcoming draft, but he’s only 35 years of age and the Falcons just hired a new head coach in Arthur Smith a couple of months ago. I think Ryan will be in Atlanta for a couple more years, or at least until he finishes out the rest of his contract.

Baltimore Ravens: Lamar Jackson – Not only will Lamar Jackson remain in Baltimore for the foreseeable future, but he will probably sign a contract extension with them as well. Lamar is a couple of years removed from an MVP season and won his first playoff game this past season, and he keeps improving in every game, so he’s only going to get better over the next several years.

Buffalo Bills: Josh Allen – Josh Allen just finished putting together an MVP caliber season and led the Buffalo Bills to the AFC Championship this past season. Like some of the other quarterbacks in the league, he will also probably get a contract extension in a year or two and keep improving his game to try and lead the Bills to their first-ever super bowl title.

Carolina Panthers: Teddy Bridgewater – Teddy Bridgewater will probably stay in Carolina for now, but I suspect that the Panthers will draft a quarterback in late April’s draft to sit and learn from the veteran before ultimately handing over the keys to the Panthers franchise.

Chicago Bears: Sam Darnold – Sam Darnold is an interesting piece of this quarterback carousel. He has a lot of talent and promise and just needs to be in a more stable situation than the one that presently resides in New York with the Jets. If the Bears can re-sign wide receiver Allen Robinson and get some other pieces around him, the Bears can be a solid playoff contender in the NFC.

Cincinnati Bengals: Joe Burrow – Joe Burrow was last year’s number one overall pick and is now two years removed from his historic Heisman trophy-winning, national championship-winning season at LSU. He tore his ACL midway through the season last year and didn’t play another snap the rest of the year. The Bengals just need to get him o-line help and he will be a staple in the Bengals organization for years to come.

Cleveland Browns: Baker Mayfield – Baker Mayfield showed a lot of promise this past season as he led the Cleveland Browns to their first playoff appearance since 2002 and to their first playoff win since 1994. My dad was still in college in 1994. I don’t know if Baker signs a contract extension, but I don’t think the Browns are going to move off him anytime soon.

Dallas Cowboys: Dak Prescott – Dak Prescott’s contract situation is getting very annoying, and as a Cowboys fan, this is the last thing that I need on my mind right now, but with that being said, I believe that Dak will ultimately sign the franchise tag for 37.7 million dollars, and Lord knows what’ll happen next year around this time. 

Denver Broncos: Deshawn Watson – Go ahead and blast me for this prediction after you read the article, but this Broncos situation has become increasingly intriguing. They have several nice pieces on the roster, especially on offense. They also have a nice home advantage that’ll come in handy when the playoffs come around. No one actually believes that the Houston Texans won’t trade Deshawn, and because he has a no-trade clause in his contract, it’s all about what he wants. Deshawn Watson has already put out a list of teams that he would be comfortable in going to, and Denver is one of them, so I think Deshawn will get traded to the Broncos.

Detroit Lions: Jared Goff – Jared Goff was the other guy involved in the Matthew Stafford trade, and he now gets a fresh start in Detroit. Detroit has a boatload of draft picks over the next few years, and I think they’ll be solid with Goff under center.

Green Bay Packers: Aaron Rodgers – As much speculation as there has been, I ultimately believe that Aaron Rodgers will stay a Green Bay Packer. He’s 37 years old, but he’s playing like he’s 27, and he just won his 3rd MVP award. The best time to revisit this topic with Aaron Rodgers would probably be next offseason.

Houston Texans: Justin Fields – Because the Houston Texans have now traded Deshawn Watson to the Denver Broncos in this set of predictions, they now own Denver’s first-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, which is 9th overall. With this pick, I think they’ll learn more in the direction of Justin Fields. Here’s a little analysis on Justin Fields from when I did my mock draft earlier this month. “Justin Fields will eventually be a franchise quarterback in the NFL. He can make every throw and he’s arguably the most athletic QB in this draft, even with his inconsistencies in some of his games this past season, i.e Indiana and Northwestern.”

Indianapolis Colts: Carson Wentz – This trade just went down last week, and makes all the sense in the world. After Philip Rivers decided to retire earlier this year, the Colts needed to find a quarterback to get them into super bowl contention, and they got it in Carson Wentz. 

Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence – For the reasoning behind this prediction, you will need to look no further than to my draft analysis of Trevor Lawerence from my mock draft. “Barring a crazy trade, this may be the only no-brainer pick in this draft. 6’6”, 220 with a cannon for an arm and underrated mobility, he’s the best prospect to enter the NFL Draft since former Colts quarterback, Andrew Luck.”

Kansas City Chiefs: Patrick Mahomes – This prediction, to the surprise of no one, is also a no-brainer. The dude has been a league MVP, and super bowl MVP, and has also signed a contract extension for half a billion dollars. There’s nothing more that needs to be said.

Los Angeles Chargers: Justin Herbert – All Justin Herbert did this past season with the Los Angeles Chargers was, oh, I don’t know, produce one of the best rookie season, if not the best rookie season by a QB in the history of the National Football League. Make no mistake about it, Justin Herbert is a stud, and he will sign a contract extension by this time next year.

Los Angeles Rams: Matthew Stafford – Matthew Stafford was traded to the Los Angeles Rams in early January after Finally making the decision to save his life and get his way out of Detroit. Stafford automatically makes the Rams a super bowl favorite and it will be interesting to see how these next couple of years playout for the Rams. 

Miami Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa – As of right now, Tua is still the starting quarterback of the Miami Dolphins, and I think this is the right call. Tua didn’t really have a stand-out rookie season, but the Dolphins need to put more pieces around him on offense to ensure that he continues his development.

Minnesota Vikings: Kirk Cousins – Kirk Cousins is also an interesting story, but there hasn’t been that much talk about whether or not Minnesota would trade him. Cousins has been solid during his time with the Vikings, and I think they can be contenders for a playoff this coming season. 

New England Patriots: Cam Newton – It’s very difficult to predict who would start for every NFL team, but it’s especially difficult to predict the starting QB for the Patriots. Cam Newton wasn’t all that great last season, but I don’t think the Patriots are considering any other options.

New Orleans Saints: Jameis Winston – This route seems like the best course of action for the New Orleans Saints. Jameis Winston would be in the second year of a great offensive system under head coach Sean Payton and would have plenty of weapons at his disposal, which is why I also believe that Jameis makes the Saints a solid playoff team.

New York Giants: Daniel Jones – Even though Daniel Jones has shown inconsistencies in his first two seasons, the Giants don’t look like they want to move off of him. I think Jones has one more to prove that he’s the guy in New York, and then the Giants will go from there. 

New York Jets: Zach Wilson – In order to explain this prediction, you need to look no further than to my draft analysis of Zach Wilson. “Even though he has had some injury and character troubles in the past, Zach Wilson can make every throw in the book, is a very good athlete, and plays with the arrogance and the moxie of a franchise QB.”

Oakland Raiders: Derrick Carr – I don’t know why there’s so much hate on Derek Carr when all this guy does is consistently put up good numbers. He’s a solid QB and I wouldn’t be surprised if he got a contract extension with Las Vegas in the next couple of years.

Philadelphia Eagles: Jalen Hurts – The Eagles just traded Carson Wentz to the Colts last week, which essentially means that Jalen Hurts will be the starter for the foreseeable future. He showed some promise last year, but the Eagles were doing some weird things in regards to their quarterback situation. Hopefully, they can surround Jalen Hurts with some solid weapons so that they can compete for a division title.

Pittsburgh Steelers: Ben Rothlisberger – As of right this moment, Ben Rothlisberger is the QB No. 1 for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Both parties have already acknowledged that they want to be together again, so he’s probably going to restructure his contract. Whether that will be the right decision, we’ll find out by the middle of next year’s season.

San Francisco 49ers: Jimmy Garapollo – There’s been a “hatorade” being toasted towards Jimmy Garapollo, and outside of the injuries, I don’t know why that’s the case. He’s been to a Super Bowl, he’s performed at a high level when healthy, and the 49ers almost never lose when he plays. It’s highly possible that the 49ers would trade Jimmy G, but I believe they should keep him.

Seattle Seahawks: Russell Wilson – Russell says he doesn’t want out of Seattle, but his actions over the last couple of weeks say otherwise, and you know what they say, “Actions speak louder than words.” But in all seriousness, I truly think Russell Wilson stays in Seattle for the next couple of years.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tom Brady – It’s difficult to believe that Tom Brady is still playing at an elite level at the young age of 43, and it doesn’t look like he has any intentions of slowing down. He could probably sign a contract extension and play until he’s 50 for all I know. 

Tennessee Titans: Ryan Tannehill – Ryan Tannehill has been very good for the Tennessee Titans for the last two seasons and led the Titans to the AFC Championship game two years ago. He signed a contract extension after that season and I believe he finishes it out with Tennessee.

Washington Football Team: Taylor Heinicke – There’s been talk over the last two weeks that Alex Smith could be on his way out of D.C, and Heinicke played well in Washington’s last playoff game against the Bucs, which has an excellent defense. I think that Heinicke could be a solid starter in this league.