Best team fits for top QBs available in 2018 NFL offseason

Editor's note: analysts and former NFL scouts Daniel Jeremiah and Bucky Brooks of the Move The Sticks Podcast share some of their scouting notes, including:

But first, we kick off this week's notebook with Jeremiah's take on the best team fit for the top QBs worth pursuing this offseason.

This offseason is going to feature major movement at the quarterback position around the NFL. The draft class is loaded with talent, and there are a handful of veteran signal-callers that will be available via free agency or trade. Here's the best team fit for each of them.


Drew Brees

BEST FIT:New Orleans Saints
This is the prediction I'm most confident about. Brees is still playing at a high level and the Saints won't let him walk away. Although, I could see them adding a young quarterback in the draft to be his eventual replacement (see below in the draft prospects section).

Kirk Cousins

BEST FIT:Minnesota Vikings
There will be several teams competing to reel in Cousins, but the Vikings would be the perfect match. They have an extremely talented and young offensive nucleus as well as one of the league's top defenses. Also, Cousins would be guaranteed a minimum of 9 indoor games every season (8 at home, 1 at Detroit). That's any quarterback's dream scenario.

AJ McCarron

BEST FIT:Cleveland Browns
I believe the Browns will look to add both a veteran and a rookie passer this offseason. Hue Jackson's affinity for McCarron is well documented and he'd be an excellent bridge before their long-term starter is ready to play (see below in the draft prospects section).

Case Keenum

BEST FIT:Denver Broncos
I see John Elway following the plan described above, addressing the QB position in both free agency and the draft. If the Vikings fail to land Cousins, I think Keenum will stay in Minnesota. In this scenario, he's a good fit for a team desperately hoping its championship window hasn't closed.

Teddy Bridgewater

BEST FIT:Kansas City Chiefs
I don't envision Bridgewater landing a starting gig this offseason. He's coming off a very serious knee injury and I don't see him commanding a big pay day. I could see him taking a short-term deal to help bring Patrick Mahomes along while learning under Andy Reid for a year or two.

Sam Bradford

BEST FIT:Baltimore Ravens
The Ravens remain committed to Joe Flacco, but I think it makes some sense to bring in some competition to keep him motivated. If healthy (that's a big if), Bradford is a more consistent passer then Flacco.


Nick Foles

BEST FIT:Arizona Cardinals
Foles will be one of the most interesting stories to follow in the coming weeks. Do the Eagles dare trade the Super Bowl LII MVP before Carson Wentz is given a clean bill of health? I'd put the odds at 50/50. I do think he would be a good fit in Arizona, and I could see them offering the Eagles an enticing collection of draft picks.


Sam Darnold

BEST FIT:Cleveland Browns
The Browns must leave this draft with their future franchise quarterback in the fold. I believe Darnold is the best prospect at the position in this class and I still believe he'll be the first overall pick.

Josh Rosen

BEST FIT:New York Jets
I'll stick with Rosen going to the Jets, but they might need to trade up 3 or 4 spots to secure his services. The Broncos sit one spot ahead of the Jets and they are in the quarterback market. Time to deal? Maybe.

Josh Allen

BEST FIT:Denver Broncos
If the Broncos are able to land a guy like Keenum, Allen would be an excellent selection at No. 5 overall. He has tremendous upside but he needs some time to develop. The addition of Keenum would allow the club to take their time with Allen and avoid rushing him onto the field.

Baker Mayfield

BEST FIT:New Orleans Saints
This would be the perfect fit for Mayfield. He could sit and learn behind a future Hall of Famer in Brees, who also happens to be the same size as Mayfield. If Mayfield starts to slide a little bit, I could easily see Sean Payton aggressively moving up to get him.

Lamar Jackson

BEST FIT:Cincinnati Bengals
I think Jackson will end up landing in the late first or early second round. I could see a team like the Bengals bringing him on board with an early second-round selection. He wouldn't have to play right away behind Andy Dalton, but he could be used in packages as he develops. -- Daniel Jeremiah

* * *


The NFL Scouting Combine (March 2-5 on NFL Network) provides coaches, general managers and scouts with a chance to see most of the draft's top prospects in action. While most evaluators will say the interviews and medical evaluations are the most important parts of the event, the field testing and athletic drills will make or break some of the top prospects on the board. With that in mind, here's the prospect I'm most excited to see work out on each day of the combine.

Day 1 (Friday, March 2): Quenton Nelson, Notre Dame, OG

Position groups working out: RB, OL, specialists
Analysis: Despite ranking as the top offensive lineman on most boards around the league, the All-American still needs a strong showing at the combine to convince evaluators he's worthy of a top-10 selection. Interior blockers aren't viewed as marquee players in the draft landscape, so Nelson must display elite athletic traits to confirm his standing as a blue-chip prospect. With several scouts and analysts touting him as arguably the best prospect in the draft, I can't wait to see if the hype matches the performance at the combine.

Day 2 (Saturday, March 3): Lamar Jackson, Louisville, QB

Position groups working out: QB, WR, TE
Analysis: The most polarizing prospect at the position will have an opportunity to sway the naysayers with an electrifying performance. Jackson is expected to blaze the Lucas Oil Stadium turf performing athletic drills (40-yard dash, 3-cone drill and short shuttles), but how he throws the ball around the yard could determine whether head coaches and scouts view him as a remarkable talent worthy of building an offense around.

Day 3 (Sunday, March 4): Harold Landry, Boston College, OLB

Position groups working out: DL, LB
Analysis: Pass rushers with a long track record of sack production are coveted at a premium, particularly when they possess outstanding athletic traits. Landry's injury-plagued senior season has raised questions about his durability and explosiveness, but a spectacular workout could change that narrative. If the BC star shows out in his workout, he could convince evaluators that his remarkable 2016 season (16.5 sacks) could be replicated in the NFL.

Day 4 (Monday, March 5): Derwin James, Florida State, S

Position groups working out: DL, LB
Analysis: It's hard to find 6-foot-3, 225-pound safeties with explosive athletic traits and fluid movement skills. James has been categorized as a "box" safety, but his combination of balance, body control and burst will pique the interest of coaches looking for a hybrid playmaker on defense. If James showcases his supreme athletic gifts while also conveying his passion and high football IQ in meetings, we could see his stock rise heading into the Pro Day circuit. -- Bucky Brooks

Follow Bucky Brooks on Twitter @BuckyBrooks.

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