This was originally published in The Athletic....
Not long ago, the Bengals had a backup quarterback they really, really valued. They valued him so much that even as their starting quarterback tightened his grip on his job, they firmly held on to his understudy, setting a high asking price for teams looking to snatch him. They held on to him until they were approached with an offer from the Cleveland Browns they simply could not refuse, and that never turned into an actual trade because, well, they were dealing with the Browns.
I’m talking about AJ McCarron, of course. AJ is now in Buffalo, where the Bengals will get to catch up with their former QB2, and if McCarron’s shoulder injury is indeed not as bad as it was originally feared, they may play against him.
McCarron’s departure leaves the Bengals staging a backup quarterback derby that resembled two really fat guys running a 100-meter dash. Jeff Driskel has out-performed Matt Barkley in two preseason games, but neither guy has done much to build confidence in what would happen if suddenly Andy Dalton couldn’t play. While I’ll bet there are no teams that interested in acquiring either, I’d imagine a general manager inquiring about either wouldn’t exactly have to do any heavy bargaining.
Which is why the Bengals should be making a play for Teddy Bridgewater.
To read more, go to The Athletic.