Jets Trade Bridgewater To Saints

August 29, 2018 - 9:38 pm
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By WFAN.com

The Jets traded quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to the New Orleans Saints on Wednesday, a sign Gang Green is planning to start rookie Sam Darnold in Week 1.

New York signed Bridgewater to a one-year, $6 million contract in March. He had been competing against Darnold and 39-year-old veteran Josh McCown for the starting job this summer. 

The Jets are also sending a sixth-round draft pick to the Saints and receiving a third-rounder in exchange. The Daily News reported that the 25-year-old QB was pulled off the team bus Wednesday while it was headed to Philadelphia for Thursday night's preseason finale.

"In his time with us, Teddy was the consummate professional, a great teammate and a tremendous leader," Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan said. "He worked diligently with our medical staff and made tremendous strides along the way. We wish him nothing but success in the future."

Bridgewater was a first-round pick (32nd overall) by the Minnesota Vikings in 2014. In his first two seasons, he started 28 games, completing 64.9 percent of his passes for 6,150 yards with 28 touchdowns and 21 interceptions. He was a Pro Bowl selection in 2015.

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But just before the start of the 2016 season, the former Louisville star suffered a season-ending, noncontact injury when he dislocated his left knee and tore his ACL in practice. Bridgewater wasn't cleared to practice again until October 2017, but the surprising play of the Vikings' third-string quarterback, Case Keenum, left Bridgewater on the sidelines. He attempted just two passes last season.

Bridgewater has been impressive in the preseason this year, completing 28 of 38 passes (73.7 percent) for 316 yards with two touchdowns and one interception.

While record-setting quarterback Drew Brees is entrenched as New Orleans' starter, the move signifies that Saints coach Sean Payton was not entirely comfortable with either veteran Tom Savage or second-year pro Taysom Hill serving as Brees' backup.

The Saints have their sights set on Super Bowl contention after coming within one play of reaching the NFC title game last season. The reigning Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles demonstrated the importance of a solid backup quarterback in 2017, winning a championship after Nick Foles had to replace injured starter Carson Wentz.

Brees, 39, has two more years remaining on his contract.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.