We continue our look at the list of Denver Broncos free agents with a tougher question than what we had last night. The Broncos have just Tim Tebow under contract next season. Adam Weber was signed to a futures contract, but it is safe to say Denver will bring in at least 1, maybe 2 quarterbacks this off-season. Should Quinn be one of them?
Brady Quinn was drafted in the late 1st round back in the 2007 draft, but due to competition in Cleveland, he was never able secure a starting job and was traded to the Broncos in 2010 after a regime change with the Browns. Despite being a 1st round pick, Quinn has only started 12 games and was unable to win the starting job from Tim Tebow and Kyle Orton in 2010 and 2011. Quinn is still only 27 and has yet to really have stability in terms of coaching to allow him to develop into the potential many saw he had in college.
Quinn saw no playing time in the regular season for the past two seasons. But seemed hot and colt during the pre-season.
Brady Quinn had a contract of $700,000 in 2011 and as a backup/competing QB would garner a slightly higher contract around $800,000-$900,000 per year with incentives if he starts a certain number of games. Considering the cap room, this would be a minor hit.
WHAT TO DO?
When looking at where to go looking forward we need to review Quinn as well as options for replacements:
- Has a knowledge of the offense and wouldn't struggle coming into a Spread Option-heavy offense compared to a QB who hasn't run the offense in practice for weeks and has familiarity with offensive players.
- Has a fantastic work ethic, during both the 2010 and 2011 training camps the three QB's would all joke about who could get to camp first and he impressed his teammates with a calming leadership and work ethic.
- Has impressive mobility, which lends itself to being able to fill in for Tebow on short notice.
- There is also the fact he has said he would like to return to the Broncos.
- As seems a trend with our current QB's, Quinn has issue with accuracy, especially on deep passes.
- Along with accuracy, Quinn lacks a top end arm to drive the ball deep.
- Despite being in the league for five years, he has only limited playing time and hasn't had the chance to experience a variety of defenses.
Depth at Quarterback:
Considering there are no quarterbacks signed to the Broncos outside of Tebow and Adam Weber to a future contract, there is an immediate need at QB.
Free Agency Quarterback Class:
This is a decent quarterback class, at least in terms of quarterbacks who will actually reach free agency. Of those who would fit the current Broncos offense that would be:
- David Garrard (Who will want to be on a team where he will start)
- Jason Campbell (Same situation as Garrard)
- Josh Johnson (Has said he would like to remain in Tampa Bay and has close ties to Josh Freeman)
- Vince Young (Has mentioned he would either re-sign with the Eagles or go to a team that would give him the chance to start)
- Dennis Dixon
- Charlie Whitehurst
Our of the quarterbacks that would work well in this offense, the fact that Tebow is such a beloved player by the fans eliminates most of these players, but we are left with Dennis Dixon (Who ran the Spread-Option in Oregon) and Charlie Whitehurst (who is done in Seattle, but is a mobile, cheap quarterback with a strong arm). It's hard to realistically though to expect any of these other quarterbacks to come here for one reason or another.
Looking at this I believe that since the Broncos need to sign a quarterback anyways, bringing back Brady Quinn makes sense, he knows and fits the offense, and is a good locker room presence. His relationship and understanding of this offense make him a valuable player. But he isn't a must resign, with players like Dennis Dixon and Charlie Whitehurst available, there are options who can fill the back-up role as well. Considering all three are young and have good potential, and would come fairly cheap and with such there is little risk to resigning Quinn or picking up a new free agent quarterback.