This offseason has seen a ton of change for the Carolina Panthers and for the first time since 2011, there will be a new quarterback leading the franchise - Teddy Bridgewater.
Bridgewater is widely viewed as a short-term answer for the Panthers until the "right guy" comes along to be the next face of the franchise. Don't buy into that one bit.
This guy has been a winner at every level throughout his football career. He lead Louisville to a 30-9 record over three years and is 22-12 as an NFL starter.
Bridgewater was going to be the face of the Minnesota Vikings prior to his season-ending injury that cost him nearly two years of his NFL career. He latched on with the New Orleans Saints assuming the role as a backup to Drew Brees, which was the perfect situation for him. He was able to learn from one of the greatest quarterbacks of all-time and was able to prove his worth when Brees went down. Bridgewater showed that he was still capable of leading a team and went 5-0 during his five starts with the Saints this past season.
If we're being honest, Bridgewater has never put up earth-shattering numbers, but he knows how to get the job done. He knows how to lead and guide his team to new heights. If Carolina wants to return to its winning form, they need a guy with high character and someone who will fight everyday like any moment could be his last snap in the league. Bridgwater fits that description perfectly, especially since at one point in his career, he didn't know if he would ever get another chance to be a starting quarterback again.
Will the Panthers tank for Trevor Lawrence? Simple answer: no.
This team is too talented, especially on the offensive side to only muster up a couple of wins. Carolina does have a difficult schedule this year and are playing in arguably the toughest division in the NFL, but there's still no way they will be in a position for the number one overall pick. Plus, I don't think that is exactly the thought process of Matt Rhule and this new coaching staff. They want to win now, which is exactly why they went out and signed Robby Anderson, extended Christian McCaffrey and traded for Russell Okung.
What is interesting about Bridgewater's contract is there is an opt-out option after year two. Not that he or the Panthers will want to part ways, but at that point, he could leverage his way into a long-term deal.
He's got the weapons on offense and some young, promising players on the defensive side. Now it's all about Bridgewater putting it all out on the field and proving to the rest of the NFL community that he can still lead a franchise.
Do you think Bridgewater is the long-term answer? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!
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