NFL offseason 2014: Matt Schaub, Michael Vick best QB options with Jay Cutler signed

Jeremy Brevard-US PRESSWIRE

The quarterback market is weaker after the Bears and Jay Cutler came to terms on a long extension.

SB Nation 2014 NFL Playoff Coverage

Many expected Jay Cutler to be the prized free agent quarterback on the market this offseason. However, the Chicago Bears put that notion to rest by signing their signal-caller to a seven-year extension.

The market is now somewhat bare unless a team wants to make a trade, and even then things are dicey. The most coveted trade options are Kirk Cousins and Matt Schaub, while the free agent market offers Michael Vick, Josh McCown and Mark Sanchez (presuming the New York Jets release him).

Schaub had a nightmarish season in 2013, getting benched for Case Keenum midway through the year. Schaub threw 14 interceptions and only 10 touchdowns, but has proven in years past to be a very capable quarterback. Schaub, 32, has two division titles and 130 touchdown passes to his credit.

Cousins, on the other hand is a bit of an unknown. Mostly a backup to Robert Griffin III his first two seasons out of Michigan State, Cousins has only appeared in eight games, completing 56.2 percent of his passes with eight touchdowns and 10 picks. Much like the Kevin Kolb trade of a few years ago, Cousins has potential, but is a team willing to gamble on his potential at what may be a high cost?

Other potential options for teams willing to really chance it are Josh Freeman and Matt Flynn, who both made a tour of the league this season.

For teams that need a quarterback. the best option appears to be the draft. Unlike the earlier part of the century, high draft picks will not cost $50 million guaranteed. Instead, the number will be at most approximately half of that, depending on slot.

This incoming crop of quarterbacks is projected to be one of the best in recent memory, with Teddy Bridgewater, Johnny Manziel, Blake Bortles and Derek Carr thought to be first-round picks. Some of the teams to keep an eye on are the Jacksonville Jaguars, Houston Texans, Oakland Raiders, Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns and Arizona Cardinals.

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