Marcus Mariota to Saints
The scenario: Colts sign Philip Rivers and Austin Hooper, Chargers trade for Kirk Cousins, Vikings sign Teddy Bridgewater, Bills sign Taysom Hill, Saints sign Marcus Mariota (three-year, $21 million deal).
Here’s what Barnwell had to say about Marcus Mariota signing with the Saints, which would be the result of New Orleans losing both of their backup quarterbacks.
"After losing both their backup quarterback and their gadget athlete, the Saints try to fill both vacated spots by going after Mariota. This is really a one-year deal with two voidable years tacked on, but Mariota gets a chance to revitalize his career while backing up future Hall of Famer Drew Brees in New Orleans."
This situation would leave Mariota as the backup to Drew Brees, who would have to get hurt for Mariota to have a chance to start in 2020. Of course, Brees could retire this offseason, but that would likely lead to the Saints bringing Bridgewater back in his place.
If Brees does return, the Saints could bring Mariota in to fill the gadget role left by Hill, as Barnwell points out, because he has the speed and athleticism to do it. However, I don’t love that particular situation for Mariota thanks to his sordid injury history during his time in the NFL.
Rather, this is a good spot for Mariota to be in because he can wait in the wings for Brees to retire. The future Hall of Fame quarterback doesn’t have much time left in his career, and there’s a realistic chance that he could hang up his cleats after 2020.
On a multi-year deal, Mariota has the opportunity to be the successor to Brees in 2021, and he’d be surrounded with a ton of talent and would be coached by one of the great offensive minds in the NFL today in head coach Sean Payton.