Throughout the offseason in the NFL, there are typically position battles that take place on each team as they prepare for the upcoming season. This offseason hasn’t been any different as there is a bevy of position battles going on, especially at the quarterback position. Seeing that the quarterback position is the most vital position, making the right decision on who to start is crucial for a team’s success.
There are rookie quarterbacks like Justin Fields and Trey Lance who are trying to earn the starting jobs on their respective teams. However, the Chicago Bears could very well name Andy Dalton their starter for Week 1 and the San Francisco 49ers are adamant about starting Jimmy Garoppolo.
While Fields and Lance still have time to plead their cases, here are four other position battles that are heating up around the NFL.
Saints QB battle between Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston
Upon the retirement of Drew Brees, the New Orleans Saints brought Jameis Winston back to compete with Taysom Hill for the starting job. Winston is more of the traditional passer while Hill is a quarterback that excels more when he’s running the ball rather than putting it in the air.
Even though the Saints would love to have a clearer choice on who to start, neither of them has done enough to separate themselves, especially in the first preseason game. In the first preseason game, Winston and Hill combined for 177 passing yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions, with Winston tossing the lone touchdown. There are two preseason games remaining for either Winston or Hill to win the starting job.
Broncos QB battle between Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater
Another quarterback battle that was created this offseason has been between Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater on the Denver Broncos. Denver wanted a veteran that could compete with Lock for the starting job, and Bridgewater was someone they liked.
Despite Bridgewater’s experience and ability to take care of the football, Lock may have created some wiggle room in the competition in the first preseason game. Lock would complete five of his seven attempts for 151 yards and two touchdowns versus the Minnesota Vikings in the first week of the NFL preseason. Seeing that the Broncos have a revamped defense under Vic Fangio, either Lock or Bridgewater is going to be tasked with running the offense smoothly in 2021.
Lions WR1 battle between Breshad Perriman, Tyrell Williams, Amon-Ra St. Brown
Life can come at you fast and the Detroit Lions understand that more than anyone. The Lions lost their three leading wide receivers from a season ago in Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones Jr., and Danny Amendola. Not to mention, they traded Matthew Stafford in exchange for Jared Goff.
With Goff under center, Detroit needs to find their No. 1 wide receiver among a group that includes Breshad Perriman, Tyrell Williams, and rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown. Quintez Cephus is also a candidate to earn some snaps at the wide receiver position for the Lions. Also, D’Andre Swift, Jamaal Williams, and T.J. Hockenson should all see targets in the passing game as well.
Patriots WR1 battle between Jakobi Meyers, Nelson Agholor, Kendrick Bourne
After multiple seasons of having an offense with a lack of weapons, the New England Patriots weren’t afraid to spend money during the NFL offseason. The Patriots began free agency by signing the two top available tight ends in Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry. In an attempt to improve at the wide receiver position, New England then signed Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne. N’Keal Harry wants to be traded, so he likely isn’t competing for a starting job on the Patriots.
But aside from Agholor and Bourne, Jakobi Meyers could be in line for a prominent role in the aerial attack. It’s safe to say that New England is going to have a new-look offense in 2021, regardless of who is under center between Cam Newton and rookie Mac Jones.