New Orleans Saints, NFL Free Agency

Saints to bring back Teddy Bridgewater: Grade, reaction, analysis

As starting opportunities dwindle around the league, Teddy Bridgewater will reportedly return to the New Orleans Saints.

There are very few teams looking for a starting quarterback this offseason, and many of those that are will fill the void via trade (Denver Broncos, Washington Redskins) or free agency (Jacksonville Jaguars). According to Jane Slater of NFL Network, Teddy Bridgewater is expected to return to the New Orleans Saints despite having a bigger offer on the table from the Miami Dolphins.

Bridgewater was once regarded as one of the top young quarterbacks in the NFL, before a career-altering knee injury late in the 2016 preseason. He took some garbage time snaps late in the 2017 season for the Minnesota Vikings, before signing with the New York Jets last offseason and ultimately being traded to the Saints last preseason.’

Bridgewater of course barely played as Drew Brees’ backup last year. But he started a meaningless Week 17 game, and at least knocked a little rust off regardless of lackluster numbers (14-of-22 for 118 yards, one touchdown and one interception).

Contract Details

Terms of Bridgewater’s return to New Orleans have not yet been released, but an educated guess says it’ll be a one or two-year deal.

National Reaction

Dianna Russini of ESPN passed along Sean Payton’s sentiment on Bridgewater during the NFL Combine.

ESPN’s Field Yates pointed to Bridgewater’s likely recognition of the situation in New Orleans.

Steve Wyche of NFL Network acknowledged the elephant in the room, should Payton move on at some point.

Here are a couple of contradictions to Slater’s report regarding the Dolphins making an offer to Bridgewater, with

At least for now, Ben Volin of the Boston Globe has pumped the brakes on Bridgewater’s deal with the Saints.

Bridgewater is from the Miami area, so his spurning of the Dolphins is noteworthy just based on that. Brees may play into his 40’s, or retire after the final year of his contract in 2019, so the Saints have kept a potential successor in place as they head into a draft where they lack early picks. Bridgewater will not even turn 27 until November.

Bridgewater’s outlook as a starting quarterback is still unclear, as he simply hasn’t played a meaningful football game in three seasons now. The picture of what he values is clear though, with a return to the stability of the Saints over taking an immediate starting opportunity with the chronically unstable Dolphins.

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