NFL Rumors: Latest Buzz Surrounding Top Available QBs

Jonathan IrwinContributor IIFebruary 7, 2013

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 20:  Quarterbacks Colin Kaepernick #7 and quarterback Alex Smith #11 of the San Francisco 49ers warm up before taking on the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC Championship game at the Georgia Dome on January 20, 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

It's just a few days into the 2013 NFL offseason and already quarterback rumors are dominating headlines.

Not only is the QB the most important position in today's NFL, it's looking to be one of the thinnest in talent available this offseason.

This year's quarterback draft talent pales in comparison to last year's, and there's not a whole lot on the free-agent market—except possibly Joe Flacco.

With no shortage of teams looking for a new man to put behind center, here's some of the top QB rumors sweeping the NFL.

Jets and Chiefs Latest Teams in Alex Smith Pursuit

It wasn't a huge surprise when the NFL's Ian Rapoport had this to tweet leading into Super Bowl weekend:

The emergence of Colin Kaepernick obviously meant the end for Alex Smith, and even though the quarterback asked to be released, it makes much more sense for the 49ers to explore trade options first.

Now that the offseason has officially begun, teams are lining up to get their hands Smith.

In a recent report, Ryan O'Halloran of the Florida Times-Union pointed out the Arizona Cardinals, Cleveland Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars and Philadelphia Eagles as possible landing spots.

None of those are particularly surprising, as it's well known those teams are looking for quarterback replacements—except maybe the Eagles, who have Nick Foles waiting in the wings.

But in a recent report by ESPN's Tim Kavanagh, he mentions the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets as two other possible destinations.

Those two teams are a bit more surprising, though that's not to say they don't both need QB upgrades.

The Chiefs have the No. 1 pick in this year's draft, and it's been suspected they would end up drafting West Virginia's Geno Smith.

With questions surrounding Geno's overall ceiling and mechanics, it makes sense for the Chiefs to explore a quarterback with proven NFL talent.

The Jets are in just as much need for a quarterback, but with Mark Sanchez's hefty contract on the books, it doesn't seem likely that they will pursue Smith.

With plenty of teams lining up to get their hands on Smith, the 49ers will have plenty of options to play with in the coming weeks.

Jets Hope to Trade Tim Tebow

After a disastrous season, it was believed that the New York Jets would outright release Tim Tebow this offseason.

That's seemed to change this week, with ESPN's Adam Schefter tweeting:

Despite a league-wide need for talent at the quarterback position, there's not any imaginable scenario in which Tebow gets traded.

A team may be willing to take a chance on its books for Tebow, but to actually trade something of value for him seems insane at this point.

The Jaguars, who heavily pursued Tebow last season before he was traded to the Jets, have one of the worst quarterback situations in the NFL.

And yet, at his introductory press conference, new Jaguars GM David Caldwell was quoted by Yahoo! Sports' Brian McIntyre as saying, "I can't imagine a scenario in which he'll be a Jacksonville Jaguar -- even if he's released."

If the Jags aren't going to go after Tebow, it's hard to imagine any other team actively pursuing him.

While the Jets would probably love to see their backup traded (and actually get something in return), the chances seem slim to none at this point.

Carson Palmer to Take a Pay Cut?

The Oakland Raiders thought they may have found a veteran diamond in the rough when they landed Carson Palmer.

Instead, the 33-year-old quarterback has been a flop. He managed to throw over 4,000 yards last season, but he also had 14 interceptions. Not to mention, the Raiders only won four games.

NFL Radio's Alex Marvez reported in January that the Raiders will give Terrelle Pryor a chance to compete for the starting quarterback job this year, tweeting:

Recently, it was rumored by ESPN's Bill Williamson that Palmer (who will make more than $13 million next season) is expected to be asked to take a pay cut.

It makes sense that Oakland would like to keep Palmer around, just in case things with Pryor don't work out.

Whether the veteran will be welcoming of the change in pay is a different story altogether.

Nothing New on Flacco

The Joe Flacco front remains quiet, with Baltimore remaining hush on what's next for their free-agent quarterback.

But if you're interested in hearing Flacco's side of things, here's a clip from his recent interview on Late Show with David Letterman:

If what Flacco says is true, than it seems very likely he could be heading back to the Ravens. Of course, the Super Bowl win doesn't hurt, either.


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