The KC Chiefs have their quarterback of the future, but what could the rest of the AFC West look like at the position by the time free agency is said and done?
The Kansas City Chiefs know they have their franchise quarterback at the helm in Patrick Mahomes. I mean, he was only the league MVP last year in his first official year as the starter, so yeah… We’re all expecting 2019 to be just as wonderful for Mahomes.
What about the rest of the AFC West though? What do the quarterback situations look like for the rest of the division as we head into free agency?
It’s actually kind of interesting because there might not be a ton of traction at the game’s most important position this spring. When looking at the four teams who make up the AFC West, all four have their starting quarterbacks.
- The Chiefs obviously are rolling with Patrick Mahomes because duh.
- The Chargers still have ageless wonder Philip Rivers.
- The Raiders have Derek Carr. Meh.
- The Broncos traded for Joe Flacco a few weeks ago and also traded away Case Keenum.
Out of the four AFC West teams, the Chiefs easily have the best quarterback situation and it’s not even debatable. Mahomes is 23 years old and still on his rookie deal. Yes, the Chiefs will have to pony up and give him a big time contract at some point, but they can get away with not doing so for at least another year or two.
The other three teams aren’t set in stone at quarterback for the next five years (at the very least) like the Chiefs are. Rivers is still great, but he’s been in the league since 2004 and isn’t getting any younger. One would have to think the Chargers would look into drafting a quarterback or maybe even trading for Josh Rosen.
While Oakland just went out and got Antonio Brown, that doesn’t mean they’re set on Derek Carr being their quarterback. They gave Carr a massive contract after he tore it up in 2016, but he has been below average since signing that deal. It wouldn’t be crazy if the Raiders decided to go in a different direction at quarterback.
Finally, we have the Broncos, who outside of Peyton Manning, have been laughable at quarterback in the last decade. They opted not to draft a quarterback last year and signed Case Keenum instead, who is now in Washington. Trading Keenum came after acquiring Joe Flacco from the Ravens, another move that made fans think “That’s so Denver”.
Where we’ll really want to zero in on the division as far as quarterbacks go will be during draft season. The Broncos will surely take a signal caller in the first round (at least they should) and the Chargers might even be a team to watch in round one as well.
The Raiders probably won’t move on from Carr, at least not with Brown in town now. He hasn’t been anything close to what he was in 2016 though, and it wouldn’t be crazy if Jon Gruden wanted to get a flashier name at the game’s flashiest position.
If the Raiders did want a new quarterback, waiting until right before they move to Las Vegas is a good strategy. Who knows when that move is actually happening?
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We might see one of the AFC West teams sign a quarterback through free agency, but it won’t be as the starter. Mahomes, Rivers, Carr, and Flacco will be the four signal callers in the West to start the year. It’s a bit of a rare situation in the AFC West in 2019, as far as the quarterback position goes.