The Denver Broncos are working towards a Case Keenum trade with the Washington Redskins, allowing the 31-year-old to fill in for the injured Alex Smith.
Case Keenum may have lost his job to Joe Flacco, but the Washington Redskins want him to be their starter in 2019. The Redskins and Broncos are working on completing a trade for the 31-year old, and NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports both sides are “motivated” to finish the deal.
UPDATE: The deal has now been completed.
Keenum took a step back with Denver last season, throwing more interceptions and completing fewer passes after his career year with Minnesota in 2017. The Broncos made it clear that they were moving on after acquiring Flacco, so this trade would allow them to recoup at least a draft pick for Keenum.
A trade is also fantastic for the Broncos’ cap situation since they would only take on a $3 million cap hit for parting with Keenum and create an $18 million savings. Cutting Keenum would have left $10 million of dead money for Denver to deal with, so that extra $7 million can go towards retaining a key player such as Matt Paradis.
This move is also a security blanket for the Redskins, who are expecting to be without Alex Smith next season. Keenum gives Washington a proven veteran quarterback who can hold the fort for a year while Smith rehabs and give Jay Gruden’s team a chance to compete in the NFC East.
The cap situation is a bit trickier for Washington, which is projected to have just over $16 million in cap room entering the offseason, not enough to absorb Keenum’s $18 million cap hit. The trade cannot be finalized until the new league year begins on March 13, so the Redskins have plenty of time to create the necessary space.
Washington will probably look to restructure a few deals to create that cap room, starting with Keenum himself. Tenured veterans like Ryan Kerrigan and Josh Norman could also be asked to take pay cuts to help accommodate Keenum’s addition to the roster.