Bridgewater must like it in New Orleans, because he decided to be the Saints’ backup.
NFL Network’s Jane Slater reported that Bridgewater passed on a “bigger deal on the table” from the Dolphins to return to the Saints.
(For what it’s worth, Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald reported the Dolphins “were not big players” for Bridgewater).
With that, Bridgewater remains in line to be the heir apparent to Drew Brees, whenever Brees retires.
Teddy Bridgewater stays with the Saints
Bridgewater has a fascinating story. The former first-round pick suffered a devastating knee injury before the 2016 season. He missed that season, barely played in 2017, but had a good preseason with the Jets last year. The Saints traded a third-round draft pick to the Jets for Bridgewater and a sixth-round selection.
That looked like a strange trade for the Saints because Bridgewater was on a one-year deal, Brees has been very durable and didn’t have any obvious plans to retire. It seemed the Saints were giving up a third-round pick for one year of Bridgewater as a backup.
But the Saints read the situation well. Not many teams are looking for a starting quarterback. Bridgewater could have gone to a shaky situation in Miami, but the best option was sticking with the Saints and waiting on Brees to retire.
Why did Bridgewater turn down the Dolphins?
Most quarterbacks, especially after going through what Bridgewater did with his injury, wouldn’t turn down more money to start elsewhere. But the Dolphins are in a strange spot, with most reporters in South Florida believing they want to tank for a quarterback in next year’s draft. The pursuit of Bridgewater perhaps indicates they’re not in tank mode, though the Dolphins still aren’t close to contention.
Bridgewater liked the locker-room culture in New Orleans, according to Slater’s report, and he seemed to be well liked by his teammates. His “bike life” celebration dance in the Saints’ locker room after wins was one of the most fun things about the 2018 season. He’s in a good spot, and it’s hard to fault him for wanting to remain there.
.@MarkIngram22 on @teddyb_h2o's dancing "He's the man. He's got it going on"
Ingram said Bridgewater's dance is from high school, when they won back to back state titles #GoSaints pic.twitter.com/V2NETiQs18
— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) December 10, 2018
Bridgewater is betting that he gets his chance in New Orleans soon enough. It’s not talked about a lot with the stale and predictable griping about quarterback play in the NFL, but there aren’t many teams looking for a starting quarterback.
Bridgewater didn’t have a ton of options. So he chose the best one to suit himself, and that was staying in a reserve role in New Orleans.
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