On Monday, the Panthers acquired Sam Darnold from the New York Jets in exchange for multiple draft picks. Darnold hasn’t been named the starter just yet, but all signs point to him winning the job.
So what happens to Bridgewater now that he’s being bumped down on the depth chart? Well, it appears the Panthers will allow him to somewhat control his own future.
According to NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport, the Panthers are giving Bridgewater the opportunity to talk with teams about a potential trade.
Carolina is reportedly open to Bridgewater returning, but it wants to give him a chance to see what’s out there.
Following the trade for Sam Darnold, the #Panthers spoke with QB Teddy Bridgewater and allowed him the opportunity to talk with teams to potentially facilitate a trade, sources say. Carolina is open to Bridgewater returning, but will give him a chance to have a say in his future.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 6, 2021
NFL fans are applauding the Panthers for this gesture.
Bridgewater didn’t perform very well in his first season with the Panthers, completing 69.1 percent of his passes for 3,733 yards, 15 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
Even though Bridgewater didn’t look that great in 2020, there should be a few teams interested in him this offseason. Denver and Washington are two teams that can definitely used another serviceable quarterback.
In the event that Bridgewater can’t find a trade partner, the Panthers will have a tough decision to make. Do they really want to pay over $20 million for a backup quarterback? The answer to that question is a resounding no, but it’s unclear if they’d be willing to just release him.