The Denver Broncos have been looking to solve the quarterback position since Peyton Manning's retirement. Today's Joe Flacco trade probably isn't a long term solution, but it signals clear change for 2019, after Case Keenum served as the starting quarterback last year.
The 34-year old Super Bowl winner is likely the Day 1 starter for Denver. The team has been connected to potential quarterbacks with the No. 10 pick in the NFL Draft, so that becomes Flacco's issue, like it was with Lamar Jackson in Baltimore last year.
So what does that mean for Keenum?
The Broncos could conceivably keep him to battle it out with Flacco for the job. Keenum and Flacco have eerily similar numbers over the last few years, though you can argue that Keenum has had more offensive weapons to work with, especially during his breakout year in Minnesota.
That would make the Broncos quarterback room extremely expensive.
Flacco has a cap hit of $26.5 million. It is expected that he will renegotiate his deal ahead of the trade. Keenum is due $21 million if he's on the roster next year.
If not, he'll represent a dead cap hit of $10 million for the Broncos.
It is very likely that Case Keenum has played his last game as a Bronco.
While he was a bit of a commodity next year, we are entering a season in which most teams at least believe they're well situated at quarterback.
Keenum could be a stop gap option for a team like the Jacksonville Jaguars, Miami Dolphins, or Oakland Raiders, who may move on from their established starters, or Washington, which was hit hard with injury at the position last year.
Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio says the New York Giants could be an interesting spot:
Here’s an intriguing potential destination: The Giants. Look at what Keenum did in Minnesota with Pat Shurmur as his offensive coordinator. With the New York offensive line not good enough to provide extended protection to a classic pocket quarterback, the line is good enough for Keenum, who has the agility and quickness to move laterally and buy time until someone springs open.
Overall, it seems like a pretty curious move, as Flacco may not be a clear upgrade over Keenum, but the Broncos seem to think they've improved at the sport's most crucial position today.