There’s been a bit of a focus on the Carson Wentz sweepstakes around these parts (for obvious reasons), but he isn’t the only quarterback whose name is making the rounds on the rumor mill lately.
• … But also that’s where we’re going to start:
Spoke with NFL management source (not from Eagles) about the Wentz melodrama. His viewpoint: If Wentz doesn’t want the Bears, Bears aren’t gonna trade for him. Eventually the Eagles take whatever Indy is offering, maybe a second plus something. Also, Eagles draft a QB 6th overall
— Les Bowen (@LesBowen) February 17, 2021
• Just because a player prefers to go one place over another doesn’t necessarily mean that’s where he’ll land. However, I think it’s becoming clear that Philly is trying to strike a balance between doing right by Wentz while also maximizing the return in a trade. Moreover, if the anonymous management source is correct in that the Bears won’t trade for him if he doesn’t want to go to Chicago, then so be it. There are other fish in the sea. They might not have Wentz’s upside, but there are options. The most important player on the field needs to be all-in going into a must-win year. If he isn’t, that potentially opens up a can of worms.
• Remember when Derek Carr was hot name on the Bears QB rumor mill? And while Wentz has taken center stage, there’s one corner of the web that is still on Carr watch:
Bears still zeroed in on Derek Carr.
— DaBearsBlog (@dabearsblog) February 13, 2021
— DaBearsBlog (@dabearsblog) February 14, 2021
• Jeff Hughes of Da Bears Blog is connected and respected. So when he throws Carr out as a preferred Bears option, I’m willing to listen. Carr makes sense as a target from the Bears’ perspective. He is a seasoned vet, proven performer, on a manageable contract (as far as QBs are concerned), and could be a stabilizing force at the position. There are good reasons the Bears are “among the clubs that could get involved” in a Carr pursuit if he becomes available. But before we get ahead of ourselves, we should consider this:
There should be zero talk of the #Raiders trading D Carr or even entertaining it. None. (And Darren Waller is criminally underpaid).
— Louis Riddick (@LRiddickESPN) February 16, 2021
• Louis Riddick is right. The Raiders shouldn’t be pushing Carr out the door. Not after the season he had last year. And certainly not unless they are confident they can upgrade. If trading a quarterback for draft assets is on their menu, then perhaps dealing Marcus Mariota is a better option. Even then, any conversation between the Bears and Raiders that gets to Mariota should first include a discussion on Carr.
• Even after signing Taylor Heinicke to an extension, ESPN’s John Keim reports Washington’s football team covets at least five quarterbacks outside the organization. No names are offered up, but it doesn’t take much of an imagination to figure out which quarterbacks who are seemingly always on the rumor mill could be on Washington’s list. WFT has already whiffed on Matthew Stafford, but it doesn’t seem like that failed pursuit will keep them down. Shooter’s shoot.
• If Washington is this adamant about pursuing outside options, I wonder what it means for Alex Smith. The Washington Football Team doesn’t make the postseason without Smith’s efforts. However, the recently awarded Comeback Player of the Year has a cap hit of $23.3 million for 2021, per OverTheCap.com. Washington could create $14.7 million in cap space by cutting Smith this offseason. Depending on how Chicago handles its QB situation between now and a hypothetical Smith cut, I can see the Bears being a fit. It wouldn’t be perfect, but teaming Smith and a rookie with upside is a proven formula for success. And Bears Head Coach Matt Nagy knows it from previous experience. Just saying…
• Vic Fangio was on the Bears’ coaching staff when they chose Mitchell Trubisky with the second pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. And while Trubisky is set to become a free agent, the Broncos reportedly have eyes on one of his classmates:
#Broncos QB situation will dominate offseason discussion. They will pursue Watson if #Texans decide to trade him. They are not in on Wentz. Lock has handled noise well, working out, focused on having a great offseason. He understands he has to get better to keep/win job. #Denver7 pic.twitter.com/uOERYWEnmJ
— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) February 15, 2021
• Fangio is a football lifer whose defenses have stood the test of time. I think it would be fun if Fangio get an elite quarterback to team with his defense. Denver should be an ideal situation for Watson with Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, and Noah Want as targets worth throwing to on Sundays. And because ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler listed Denver as a team that Watson is intrigued by, this situation is worth monitoring.
• A Trevor Lawrence update:
Source says QB Trevor Lawrence had successful surgery today on his left shoulder. Expectation is that he can begin throwing again in 4-6 weeks and will be ready for training camp.
— Dan Graziano (@DanGrazianoESPN) February 16, 2021
• I dunno about you, but you’d be crazy to take this guy — post-surgery — in the first 19 picks of the 2021 NFL Draft.