In what is surprising news for an unsurprising outcome, Sam Bradford finds himself traded yet again, this time to the Vikings. After Teddy Bridgewater went down with 2,398 explosions in his leg, many wondered what direction the Vikings would go. Was it going to be a destination for Mark Sanchez (LOL)? Maybe even Colin Kaepernick? Or as I aptly put it the other day on our weekly Podcast: sticking with the status quo and having A Shaun Hill to Die On? All of these options could have been considered for a franchise (including other ones), that despite suffering a huge setback this year by losing their starting quarterback, still had a lot of pieces to compete in the near future with. And while the type of injury Bridgewater suffered is something that could affect his career outlook, so far the prognosis had been slightly positive. Even with that in mind, the Vikings’ Rick Spielman and Mike Zimmer decided to mortgage a major part of their future for the very mediocre, and very injury-prone Sam Bradford. Here’s how the deal looks based off today’s reports:
|Eagles send:||Vikings send:|
|Sam Bradford||2017 1st Round Pick|
|$11,000,0000 (of $18,000,000) in Total Salary||2018 Conditional 4th Round Pick*|
*The conditional pick can become a second or third rounder based on the Vikings success, as in, for example, if they reach the NFC Championship Game, it turns into a third, and if they reach the Super Bowl, it becomes a second rounder.
Okay, so, my non-expert opinion is this:
Why? Look, I understand what it means to go into a year with Shaun Hill as your starting quarterback. If the Podcast title didn’t give it away, I’ll say it now: The best complement I can give to Hill is that he’s probably a top-50 quarterback in the league. THERE, I SAID A NICE THING. I think it was. Not really. Alright, look, I get the fact that you don’t want an empty hole at the position. I get that there’s a new stadium in place and you want to field a team that will win some games. All of this is totally rational and we should applaud a franchise that believes in these goals. But the actual way they are doing it… c’mon buddy. C’mon buddy… Granted, Sam Bradford, to use my Hill “compliment”, is probably a top-25 quarterback in the league, good for doubling your talent, but brah, if you’re an old cat lady with 50 cats, 25 less improves the situation, but you’re still an old lady with cats. Let me put it this way: You just gave up a first round pick for a guy who looks like this when he throws to a receiver. Call me crazy, but trading for the most traded number one pick of all time, with his own set of question marks, isn’t shrewd at all… it’s desperate.
Yes, Zimmer could be a quarterback whisperer (though I think Norv Turner would have more to do with this), and sure, Bradford will have some interesting weapons and a better surrounding cast up front (marginally) to protect him, but what does this do for next year? Are they going to trade Bradford to the Rams when Bridgewater comes back? Actually, now that I think of it…
So, for the fantasy implications:
Rankings will be updated by tomorrow morning, but my first inclination is to move Bradford up. He’s at 28 right now, and I’m happy to move him up a few spots, to, say… who the f*ck cares. Honestly. He’s still not a viable option in anything but four-quarterback leagues. (I’m kidding, he’s actually okay in your 2QB formats, and I’d put him around the Jay Cutler and Alex Smith zone…) And I’m going to lump Chase Daniels and Carson Wentz together, because I’m not quite sure who gets the start. There are statements already that it’s Wentz in Week 1, but I’m going to err on the side of caution and wait until we get a definitive answer before commenting. I don’t see either fantasy relevant in your regular formats right now, regardless.
Stefon Diggs probably returns to where I had him before Bridgewater went down, and that was around the Jordan Matthews zone. At the very least, I can say that while Bradford’s accuracy is about as bad as Bridgewater’s, he can at least throw the ball further than 10 yards. At least I think he can.. sometimes last season I found myself wondering that. Speaking of Matthews, he’ll probably stay about the same… to be fair, I think all the receivers kinda stay in a holding pattern for now. Zach Ertz and Kyle Rudolph will probably get slight upticks, mostly for the reasons why I moved Jason Witten slightly up when Tony Romo went down for, quite possibly, the rest of his life. As for the running backs? Adrian Peterson will likely move back slightly, as it’s clear Zimmer will want Bradford to actually throw the ball, where as with Hill, you merely just wanted to survive it. And Ryan Mathews (and to a lesser extent, Darren Sproles) will move up a little, as if the starter is indeed Wentz, you’ll want to establish the run as much and as often as you can so there’s a “soft landing” for his introduction to the league.
In the end, it’s hard for me to take this acquisition seriously. Yes, there will be both fantasy and real impact to both these teams… and I can’t help but wonder if the Eagles are laughing to the bank at this very moment, and if your average Vikings fan will have a healthy liver come Tuesday…