Free agency is still a few weeks away, but early rumors indicate that the Jacksonville Jaguars are already the frontrunner to sign Nick Foles after his exit from Philadelphia.
Eagles general manager Howie Roseman said on Wednesday that the team had decided not to place the franchise tag on Foles, saying the former Super Bowl MVP “deserves an opportunity to lead a team.” As ESPN reported, Foles wants to be an NFL starter after serving as backup to Carson Wentz for the past two season and both times coming in late to lead the team into the playoffs.
“I would love to lead a team,” Foles said at the end of last season (via ESPN). “The starter thing, leading a team, impacting a locker room… that’s why we play the game, to impact people, to create an atmosphere.”
While there are already a handful of quarterback-hungry teams being connected to Foles, NFL insider Ian Rapoport reported that the Jacksonville Jaguars are considered the early favorites. The Jaguars have no clear path at quarterback after benching Blake Bortles, and their main competition in the Washington Redskins reportedly want to make veteran Colt McCoy their starter for 2019. The Denver Broncos already left the quarterback race when they traded for Joe Flacco, leaving even less competition for his services.
There could still be some other competition for Nick Foles. As SB Nation reported, the New York Giants are reportedly very interested in Foles, even though the team had publicly committed to keeping Eli Manning on as starter. The report noted that the Giants might still be likely to stick with Manning as the starter and look to land a quarterback with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, so the interest in Nick Foles could just be a bit of due diligence.
Whatever team lands Nick Foles will help the quarterback continue his amazing comeback story. Foles said he contemplated retirement after a shaky 2015 season with the St. Louis Rams, but decided to rejoin the coach who drafted him, Andy Reid, with the Kansas City Chiefs the following season. He came to Philadelphia to be the team’s backup in 2017, taking over for Wentz late to lead the team to its first Super Bowl win. Nick Foles has been at his best when the games matter the most, with a 98.8 passer rating in the postseason, the sixth best in NFL history.
With still more than two weeks until NFL free agency begins, the rumors surrounding Nick Foles are only likely to grow.