The NY Jets will be getting a quarterback with legitimate NFL experience for the 2023 season. Who that quarterback will be and what it says about the expectations for next season is another can of worms.
While there is not a public playoff mandate, there is a sense that if the team does not make it there could be serious changes to the two leaders in the organization — that being head coach Robert Saleh and general manager Joe Douglas.
The first is a veteran who still has plenty left in the tank. This not only could stabilize the quarterback position for the Jets in 2023 but if all goes right could be the right guy to maximize the surrounding talent and have a number of years of success.
The two names that stand out under this path would be Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo — both of whom are 31 years old and have proven experience as the leaders of their previous teams.
The second path would be to go all-in on an aging superstar, understanding that this would be a focus on the 2023 season, specifically with uncertainty beyond that.
The two names that stand out for this second path would be Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady. Both are huge names in the league and, although they feel like long shots, rumblings of both players no longer staying with their current teams have antennas around New York going up.
For any quarterback decision, asset allocation will be a major factor. Aaron Rodgers will be the most costly as it will take a trade to acquire him.
Derek Carr could be traded for, but the asking price will be much lower than Rodgers. Meanwhile, for Jimmy Garoppolo and Tom Brady, they will be costly in terms of cap space, with the Jets needing to sign them as free agents outright.
If the Jets are to go all-in on Rodgers or Brady, they are shooting for a trip to the Super Bowl in 2023. Although that is the number one goal for most players, quarterbacks of this stature and age only have one thing on their minds.
If the Jets did go this route, it would surely feel like it had Woody Johnson's fingerprints all over it. Johnson has has a tendency over the years to get involved when it comes to making splashy moves that lack thoughts toward future team-building.
The obvious reward of Rodgers or Brady having one final great season and elevating a young and talented team is worth getting excited about, but the downside if things go wrong, such as injury or simply these older quarterbacks not being able to reach their peak anymore, is a notable concern.
The team could only really count on these quarterbacks for one season, which would mean needing to set up a long-term plan behind the scenes, either with Zach Wilson or someone else in mind.
Which option makes the most sense for the NY Jets at quarterback?
The option that seems to make the most sense would be to acquire an established veteran that has a number of years left in the tank. Carr or Garoppolo could come in and make an impact right away while also gelling with the team for multiple seasons.
This would give the Jets a quarterback for players like Garrett Wilson, Breece Hall, and others to grow with, as well as having the ability to plan a bit more strategically when thinking of the "long-term" answer at quarterback.
With the seats of Saleh and Douglas getting hotter, the decision they make about who is under center in 2023 will be the one that matters most for their careers in New York.
This is why they can't entertain any option less than a quarterback with meaningful experience, such as the four mentioned. It would also be beneficial for the duo if Woody Johnson does not end up being the main decision-maker here.
Who plays quarterback for the Jets will show just how 'all-in' the team is going for the 2023 season and the path that this organization will look to take with ramifications for years to come.