The New York Jets have officially shipped quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and a sixth-round pick to the New Orleans Saints in exchange for a third-round pick. This was the correct move to make and the team will be better off for it in both the short and the long-term.
The era of Sam Darnold has arrived.
Well, there’s nothing that indicated it hadn’t already arrived before Wednesday evening but now there are no more arguments. There is no more debating, no more calls for another young quarterback to start, and no more quarterback competition.
This is Darnold’s team now. He is the future and the future has just become the present.
This, of course, all comes at the heels of a trade that sent loveable quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to the New Orleans Saints along with a sixth-round draft pick in exchange for a third-round pick in the upcoming 2019 NFL Draft. Taking a step back for a minute, this is a great trade and a great return on investment.
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Per John Breech of CBS Sports, the Jets will only be responsible for a measly $1 million, $500K for his signing bonus and $500K for his workout bonus. This means that the Jets essentially weaseled their way into paying $1 million and a sixth-round pick for a third-round pick.
No matter which way you slice that cake, it still tastes delicious.
There will be some who argue that the Jets should’ve waited and bode their time. Once some team’s starting quarterback goes down with an injury Bridegwater’s value would easily shoot up to a second or even a first round pick.
But the team ultimately made the right call.
The NFL is not a league that rewards those who sit on their hands and wait. Teams must be proactive and jump on opportunities when they are present.
Asking the Jets to wait until the regular season, if not the trade deadline, is asking the team to make a bunch of assumptions about how the future will play out.
You can’t assume that a starting quarterback will go down. You can’t assume that Bridgewater’s trade value will hold up. And you most definitely cannot assume that a team will give up a higher draft pick if you simply wait a few weeks.
Now, this isn’t to say that the Jets should have looked to unload him as quickly as possible. Bridgewater is an asset to any team he is on with his infectious charm and leadership on top of his abilities as a quarterback. But with a third-round pick as an offer sitting right there on the table, it’s kind of hard to blame them for jumping at the opportunity.
Not only should they not be blamed, but they should be praised.
Bridgewater can now go on to play an integral role as Drew Brees‘ backup in New Orleans and potentially become their quarterback of the future. Meanwhile, back in East Rutherford, the Jets can focus their attention solely on Darnold and do their best to build around him as the future of the franchise.
And they get to do this with the delight of having an extra third-round pick at their disposal for next year and the satisfaction of knowing that they swindled it away out of thin air. That’s what’s known as highway robbery.
And that’s what’s known as a good trade.