Are the Carolina Panthers stalling on Teddy Bridgewater trade?

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Teddy Bridgewater
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Teddy Bridgewater /
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Teddy Bridgewater
(Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater /

Teddy Bridgewater’s future

There were more than a few eyebrows raised when the Carolina Panthers decided to give Teddy Bridgewater a three-year, $63 million deal with a $15 million signing bonus and $33 million guaranteed in free agency. Head coach Matt Rhule appeared keen to give Cam Newton another go after a frustrating 18 months through injury. But general manager Marty Hurney eventually decided to let go of the 2015 NFL MVP in favor of a different option under center.

A move the Panthers probably regret, in hindsight.

Just one year later Bridgewater’s future with the Panthers is far from certain. This has a lot to do with the signal-caller going 0-8 on game-winning or tying drives throughout the campaign, with his clear regression from a confidence standpoint something else Carolina no doubt took a good long look at.

It’s easy to forget that Bridgewater hadn’t started a full season since 2015 with the Minnesota Vikings. He didn’t have much in the way of consistent protection in critical moments and the absence of Christian McCaffrey for all-but three games in 2020 was another major stumbling block.

However, Carolina did have four players go over 1,000 scrimmage yards.

And they finished 5-11 for the second straight year.

Bridgewater’s recent social media behavior is a further indication the writing is on the wall. In truth, the Panthers may have already told the former Louisville standout that he is no longer part of their plans.

This is an extreme disappointment after he worked exceptionally hard to get another prominent starting opportunity after almost losing his leg. Bridgewater might feel hard done by, but the NFL is a ruthless business, and waiting around to see if he can turn things around would jeopardize all the good work being done across the organization.