With Lamar Jackson starting to emerge in Baltimore, are the Ravens ready to move on from Joe Flacco as their starting quarterback? The veteran still has some game left in him, but with a first round pick spent on Jackson in the draft, you have to figure the Ravens are looking to the future. Flacco's injury has given Jackson plenty of action for the Ravens to make an assessment and they likely believe that Jackson is the future. With Robert Griffin III as a back up option too, you have to figure the Ravens will be ready to move one of the QBs and Flacco will likely be that target. With a $26 million salary cap impact, it would make sense to get value back for him? But who will be in the market for a new QB for 2019?
Flacco still has a future in the NFL. He will be 33 next season, which is middle-aged today for a league where old men like Tom Brady and Drew Brees are still thriving (we will get to Eli later). His 2019 salary is actually not terrible and while there is a cap hit for next year, Flacco's new team and renegotiate and extend out his deal to bring that number down to restock the cupboards around him.
Here are some ideas:
Miami Dolphins - The Dolphins look like they will be getting a major house cleaning this season and often-injured starter Ryan Tannehill will probably be a casualty. According to Rotowire, it already looks like they have made that decision. With David Fales and Brock Osweiler as back-ups, it seems unlikely that their 2019 starter is currently on the roster. So, a move for a player like Flacco makes a lot of sense.
Jacksonville Jaguars - After last season's surprising run, reality has set in in Jacksonville again that Blake Bortles is not a bona fide starter there. Cody Kessler does not do too much more to wow anyone as a starter, so the Jaguars will likely be in the market. With a strong running game with Fournette and Yeldon behind him, Flacco can be the missing piece for a Jacksonville team that is build much like the Ravens Super Bowl team was around Flacco - great defense, solid running game, and enough receivers to let Flacco open it up once in a while. Flacco would also be a good fit with the Marrone and Coughlin regimes too as he is an old-school, smart, and low risk decision-maker.
New York Giants - The Giants made a commitment to Eli Manning in the off-season by passing up QB options and gong to Saquon Barkley with the #2 pick in the draft. While Barkley looks like the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and gave the Giants a solid running back rotation, the Giants offense has floundered. Many say it is the offensive line, but the old Manning also played behind some terrible lines too and still managed to make good decisions. This version has be in rapid decline for years now despite having solid running backs and excellent receivers. This is the Giants time. With Odell Beckham Jr., Barkley, Sterling Shepherd, etc., the Giants need to show a jolt next season and Flacco might be their answer. They gave up on 3rd Rounder Davis Webb before the season and Kyle Lauletta, a fourth rounder last year, has not inspired confidence. Flacco can immediately bring a veteran leader and also help the tram figure out if Lauletta has a futuer there. With a weak 2019 QB draft coming, Flacco seems like the best option. Secondly, he is also a New Jersey native, so being closer to family is never a bad thing.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Jameis Winston may have worn out his welcome in Tampa already. The former #1 overall pick has battled legal trouble his whole career. While he has shown some flashes from time to time, he never emerged into that transcendental player the Bucs were hoping he would be. This is another team that has the weapons and showed it can win with a Ryan Fitzpatrick, so a better passer can definitely help the Bucs get back into contention.
With the 2019 draft light on franchise quarterback options and a limited free agent pool, it seems likely that it will be a traders market and Flacco might be the best option out there. My money would be on Jacksonville or Miami to emerge as the frontrunners.