By Reid McEvoy
The idea of a Sheldon Richardson for A.J. McCarron trade between the New York Jets and Cincinnati Bengals has emerged as a possibility, and on paper it would appear to a win-win for both teams.
For the Jets, they will (supposedly) solve their starting quarterback situation. For the Bengals, they will strengthen their defensive line and lose just their backup quarterback in the process.
McCarron, a quarterback who starred in four years of college at Alabama, with 9,019 passing yards, 77 touchdowns and just 15 interceptions during that span, was drafted by the Bengals in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL draft. He’s been a backup with a lack of opportunities ever since, playing behind Andy Dalton. The 26-year-old has played in a total of 9 games, one being a playoff game, and has seven touchdowns and three interceptions on his resume.
After Ryan Fitzpatrick’s downfall, and with only Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg as quarterbacks on the current roster, the Jets have been oddly conservative in finding a new passer. But some believe McCarron is the solution to that problem.
For Richardson, he has become quite overrated, and with his off-the-field issues and locker room distractions, the Jets should capitalize now before his stock gets any lower. However, the Jets at one point in time not long ago had the No.1 run defense in the league, and nobody would have said Richardson was overrated.
For the Jets, this potential trade is both good and bad.
On one side, the Jets do need a quarterback, and with little effort to fix that so far in free agency, the shouts from fans will only get greater. McCarron could be the player to fix it.
But Richardson being traded would leave a giant hole on the defensive line, and even with Muhammad Wilkerson and Leonard Williams, the opposing offenses would simply work away from those two outstanding players.
It all comes down to what the organization's opinion is on McCarron as a potential quarterback of the future, and also if Richardson can get his career back on track.