Football fans were spoiled this past weekend with the quality slate of matchups to kick off the NFL playoffs. Not to mention, the two best teams in CFB are about to square off for the National Championship. Not only are the two best teams about to square off, the two best QB’s – both of whom would be top 5 picks if eligible for the draft are going to face off against each other. Over the next few days, we will look to see how these QBs can end up in the NFC East over the next few seasons.
Trevor Lawrence, aka “Sunshine”, is a true freshman QB who doesn’t play like a true freshman. At 19 years old, Lawrence has the tools to become a generational talent in the NFL. Poise, accuracy, strong-arm, and most importantly skilled between the ears he is about to put them all to the test against a defense with multiple NFL prospects. Trevor won’t be eligible until the 2021 NFL draft, so lets take a look into how he can land with one of the teams in the NFC East.
Trevor Lawrence’s 52-yard Pass TD was his 25th of the season, T-3rd most by an ACC freshman with Philip Rivers. He can tie Brad Kaaya for 2nd with 1 more Pass TD. Jameis Winston (40) holds the record for both ACC and FBS freshman. pic.twitter.com/0Y5NFnLSFb
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) December 29, 2018
As most know, Washington traded for and signed an aging Alex Smith to a 4 year $94 Million extension deal this past offseason. Smith’s leg injury recovery hasn’t been smooth sailing. Per Ian Rapaport, Smith was battling an infection after the surgery to repair his broker tibia and fibia. Rapaport went on to say that Smith is not expected to be ready for the start of the 2019 NFL season. Smith getting back onto the field would be rather impressive and playing at high level would be a miracle. In Smith’s contract, the Redskins have a potential out after the 2020 season, where they would only have $10.8million in dead cap space; and saving the team $40million in cap space over the following two years.
This would be the most likely case for Trevor Lawrence to enter the NFC East. The Redskins are most likely going to be the bottom dogs in the NFC East over the next two seasons, especially if Smith’s recovery doesn’t pick up. It’s not common that a top-level NFL QB hits the open market, so bringing a guy in during free agency most likely keeps the team in NFL purgatory. This offseason the Skins can kick the tires again on RG3 or a Nate Sudfeld, but it’s unlikely they lay out the cash for another QB with Smith still on the roster. The 2020 NFL QB FA crop looks a bit better, but the top names are likely to resign with their respective teams or retire. If the Redskins elect to take a QB in the draft, there appears to be plenty for 2020, such as Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert, Jake Fromm and whoever else appears on the radar. This could be a good opportunity to get a franchise QB, or wait another season and draft players to surround Lawrence.
The blueprint for success with teams not named the New England Patriots is to build a team with a solid defense, running game and offensive line – and then bring in a stud QB to compete for championships on a “small contract”. In the 2018 season, the top 5 highest paid QBs all missed the NFL Playoffs. Being able to allocate cap to other positions allows teams to compete all over the field. If the Redskins decide to draft players around the QB in the 2019 and 2020 drafts and then pick up Lawrence in 2021, the NFC East and NFL for the matter will be on watch.
New York Giants
It’s odd, because the Giants have offensive talent seemingly everywhere except for at QB and half the offensive line. With arguably the leagues best back and a top 5 WR, the offense has enough firepower at the skill positions to win. The defense carries one of the better young safeties and a great corner in Jenkins. Vernon when healthy is a great pass rusher, but their linebackers seem to be a liability. In all reality, I believe that the Giants will select their franchise QB in this years draft (most likely Dwayne Haskins) and will not be in position to take Lawrence in 2021.
Jerry Jones has already made comments standing behind Dak Prescott as their franchise QB, and with a 10-win season and playoff victory the Cowboys will most likely ink Prescott to a multi-year deal after this season or next year. Unless the wheels completely fall off with Prescott, it is very doubtful that the Cowboys draft Lawrence.
With the Nick Foles magic now one game into the 2018-2019 playoffs – I fully believe that the Eagles will decline the option for 2019, but franchise tag the QB in an attempt to trade him. Wentz will be the QB of the Eagles in 2019. That being said, if Wentz is “injury prone” as fans have been rushing to tag him as – the Eagles will most likely use his 5th year option as a “prove it” year. If Wentz does not prove it, and a backup not named Nick Foles is forced to play, the Eagles may be in position to draft Lawrence. This seems IMPROBABLE, but it’s fun to play around with these things.