Top 5 Potential Suitors For Vince Young
The Buffalo Bills refurbished their backup quarterback situation in recent days by acquiring Tarvaris Jackson from the Seattle Seahawks and following that up by releasing Vince Young. A poor preseason and training camp made Young expendable and Buffalo’s brass wasted no time to seek and secure what they felt would be an upgrade behind Ryan Fitzpatrick.
Young is still just 29 years old, and if he signs elsewhere this year it will be his third team in just over a year. Any team looking to add a backup quarterback may be interested in adding him, as the two-time Pro Bowler has to be regarded as the best available signal caller on the market right now.
Here are my top five teams that could be giving Young’s agent a call sometime soon:
1. St. Louis Rams
The Rams do not have an impressive situation backing up Sam Bradford right now, with Kellen Clemens and Tom Brandstater currently in place behind the former #1 overall pick on the depth chart. Young, even with his limitations, would be a clear upgrade over those two guys, and he could capably step in if Bradford has another injury-riddled season as he did in 2011. The Rams’ new head coach Jeff Fisher was the coach of the Tennessee Titans in 2006 when that team drafted Young third overall, so it’s an easy connection and Fisher may be able to convince the St. Louis brass to give him a shot.
2. Green Bay Packers
Packers’ general manager Ted Thompson has been able to unearth capable players in unlikely spots in recent years, and adding Young could be another low-risk move in that vein. Behind Aaron Rodgers right now is the unproven Graham Harrell and a rookie in B.J. Coleman, so it’s fair to say a significant injury that kept Rodgers out for any period of time would be devastating to Green Bay’s playoff and Super Bowl aspirations. Young could be a capable stop-gap in that situation, and keep the Packers’ offense afloat in Rodgers’ absence.
3. Indianapolis Colts
Indianapolis has clearly tied their future plans to Andrew Luck after making him the #1 overall pick this year, but behind him on the depth chart is a retread veteran in Drew Stanton and a rookie that was “Mr. Irrelevant” in April’s draft in Chandler Harnish. Young has a better track record than Stanton with 50 career starts under his belt, and at minimum he brings more athletic skills to a potential spot as Luck’s backup. Young could even be a solid fit for Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians’ offensive system, where his best attributes could be put on display if he had to play a lot.
4. Carolina Panthers
The Panthers are another team with a clear-cut future plan at quarterback with Cam Newton firmly in place, but their backup situation is not great with Derek Anderson and former high draft pick Jimmy Clausen representing a steep drop-off from the 2011 #1 overall pick. Carolina offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski has created a system that highlights Newton’s strengths, including his mobility, and Young has many of the same attributes as a runner even without Newton’s upside.
5. Denver Broncos
This one may be a bit of a reach, especially since Peyton Manning has largely answered any questions about the health of his surgically repaired neck to this point. But the Broncos’ backup quarterback situation is not especially strong with Caleb Hanie, Adam Weber and rookie Brock Osweiler currently there. If Manning has issues with his neck as the season goes on and one of those guys is forced into action, it’s safe to say the big expectations Denver is entering the season with will quickly disappear. Young has his own limitations, yes, but if the Broncos could win with Tim Tebow under center last season they could win some games with Young at the helm if he had to take over.