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10 Crazy NFL Offseason Predictions: Tom Brady Jumps Ship, Jim Harbaugh Returns, Commanders Get New Owners

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The last offseason was the craziest in NFL history. The wide receiver market has been completely redefined as several stars have been traded, we’ve seen a lot of quarterback moves, Tom Brady retired and then didn’t, and Sean Payton stepped down as head coach of the New Orleans Saints. It’s going to be hard to top the craziness of the last offseason, but expect this upcoming offseason to be interesting as well.

What does the future hold for Brady? For Aaron Rodgers? What kinds of changes are coming to the league this offseason, and what will be the most surprising head coach headline? Below, we’ll make and break down 10 crazy predictions for this NFL offseason.

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With the San Francisco 49ers’ decision to move Trey Lance to starting quarterback and the emergence of Brock Purdy, it looks like Jimmy G’s days in The Bay are numbered. The quarterback carousel this offseason will be interesting and could be just as wild as last year. Garoppolo will be one of the most intriguing beacons looking for a new home.

After we all witness Zach Wilson’s struggles, the Jets will look to add another quarterback. With Robert Saleh’s familiarity with Garoppolo, it could be a match. The Jets underestimate talent in the backfield and wide receiver. Adding a quarterback who can be a consistent game manager would immediately make New York better.

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Commanders love to make questionable quarterback decisions. From allowing Kirk Cousins ​​to walk, to signing Mark Sanchez out of desperation in 2018, trading for Carson Wentz, replacing Taylor Heinicke with the aforementioned Wentz, and throwing away the 2022 campaign, Washington has pretty much done it all. Carr’s signing with Washington looks like a “commanders” decision.

Washington is in no position to seduce Tom Brady or pick one of the top flags in the 2023 NFL Draft. So, in steps Carr. The former Raider isn’t bad, but neither is he a young gun that’s going to rejuvenate the franchise. Some fans will be very happy with this decision, while others will not.

8. Tony Pollard Attracts Huge Interest in Free Agency, Leaves Cowboys

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There are several intriguing running backs looking for new deals this offseason, including Saquon Barkley, Josh Jacobs and David Montgomery. The one I predict will receive the most interest, however, is Tony Pollard of the Cowboys.

Pollard earned Pro Bowl honors this season, amassing a career-high 1,359 yards from scrimmage and 12 touchdowns in 15 games. Whether working on the passing game, beating defenses in the corner of a jet sweep, or just operating as your typical defense between tackles, Pollard is a versatile weapon that teams will bank on – more than Barkley, Jacobs or Montgomery.

Spotrac Projects Pollard will sign a three-year, $25.40 million contract with an average annual value of $8.4 million. My prediction is that it’s going to be bigger than that, with their new AAV surpassing $10 million.

7. Dan Snyder sells team to Jeff Bezos, Jay-Z, Matthew McConaughey

This offseason, it finally happens. After more than two decades, the Washington NFL franchise will come under new ownership as Snyder sells his beloved Commanders to a group headed by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, musician Jay-Z and actor Matthew McConaughey.

Commanders announced on November 2 that the Snyders had engaged Bank of America Securities to “consider potential transactions.” League sources estimate CBS Sports NFL Insider Jonathan Jones that the full franchise would sell for between $5.5 and $6.5 billion, but some believe it could cost even more.

After being rejected by the Cowboys this season, OBJ will sign with his former team. It looked like the Cowboys were banking on Beckham signing, so he showed up for a visit and Dallas signed… TY Hilton. Despite all the reports saying both sides were/still are in talks, we haven’t seen anything come to fruition, and it’s fair to wonder if anything will.

Another reason Beckham might be interested in his former team is because they seem to be on the rise. Brian Daboll was clearly a good signing, Saquon Barkley is back to being a star and Daniel Jones could be a franchise quarterback. At the very least, he’s earned the right to be the guy in 2023. The Giants need the wide receiver position, and OBJ has stayed in touch with some of his friends there.

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After the season, Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens will again enter contract negotiations. It didn’t go too well last year, thanks to the pesky Cleveland Browns giving Deshaun Watson a fully guaranteed contract. ESPN reported that Jackson turned down a five-year extension worth more than $250 million, with $133 million guaranteed upon signing before the start of the 2022 season.

That fully guaranteed contract is a huge hurdle to overcome in this situation, which will lead to tension between the two sides – who want the same thing. My prediction is that Jackson will demand a negotiation after failing to get that deal fully secured. Armed with the franchise brand, the Ravens will use it. According to CBS Sports cap guru Joel Corry, exclusive franchise designation will be more likely. Four of the last five times quarterbacks have been designated as franchise players, the exclusive tag has been used.

Now the question will be whether Jackson actually want to leave Baltimore? I say no – and there’s no way the Ravens are actually offering deals for their star quarterback. Ultimately, Jackson will play on tag, but the fanbase won’t have a fun offseason.

4. Sean Payton is not returning to the NFL

As we approach the end of this regular season, my prediction is that you will see the Payton Hype Train exit the station at full speed. The former Saints coach will be that “big fish” that every NFL team in need of a new leader will be after, and it will turn into some sort of coin toss.

However, I predict Payton will shock everyone by not returning to the sideline. There will be several reasons why Payton won’t return, but one of them is because her main role wasn’t available. There has been a lot of noise surrounding Payton and her level of interest in Justin Herbert and the Los Angeles Chargers. With them making the playoffs, Brandon Staley is going nowhere.

3. The NFL makes passer violence even worse

Was reported last month that the NFL will discuss the possibility of making passer violence a reviewable penalty. The league has made touching the quarterback a daunting task for defensemen, as sack artists can’t even allow the natural pull of gravity to affect them — like when they momentarily put their weight on the quarterback as they tackle him to the ground. Rather than reversing course with these rules, my prediction is that the NFL will actually make the penalty reviewable – which will be a disaster.

Remember when the NFL made pass interference reviewable for a year in 2019? It sounded like a great idea in theory, but it didn’t work out that way. Only 13 of 81 pass interference challenges were successful in 2019, per SI.com. There were two reasons for this, in my opinion. One, I assume the league wanted officials to lean towards their original decision, and two, slowing these types of plays down in the review process has really confused things.

Basically, we paused games to view what we perceived as clear and obvious pass interference penalties in slow motion, only for the official to turn on the microphone and announce that there was no penalty. It was maddening, and that’s what will happen with passer violence.

It’s become an annual tradition: “X NFL team interested in Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh.” I thought Harbaugh’s stuff would be easy to ignore this offseason, as he spurned the Minnesota Vikings last year and returned to the University of Michigan “with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind!” while telling the athletic director that this NFL flirtation was a “one-time thing.” Well, here we go again.

According to The Athletic, if offered a job to get back to the pros, Harbaugh is expected to pick it up.

“I think it’s a done deal if he gets an offer,” a source close to Harbaugh told The Athletic.

Harbaugh played for the Colts from 1994 to 1997 and is in the Ring of Honor. While he only went 20-26 as a regular season starter, Harbaugh helped the Colts reach the AFC Championship game during the 1995 campaign by earning Pro Bowl honors and earning Comeback Player of the Year. We already know that Jim Irsay likes his former players. Harbaugh would be a better option than Jeff Saturday.

1. Tom Brady jumps pirate ships

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The 2022 campaign got off to a bad start for Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but he and the offense bounced back and could make the playoffs in an NFC that’s hard to predict. What happens in 2023?

Brady will be a free agent and I’m sure he’ll think about retiring again. Ultimately, I say he decides to head to the west coast and join the Las Vegas Raiders – hopping from one pirate ship to another. The Raiders have a few pieces up front in Darren Waller, Hunter Renfrow and Davante Adams, and Brady has a lot of experience working with Josh McDaniels. The AFC West is full of Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert, but Brady doesn’t care. He will try to win one of the best divisions in the NFL before hanging up his boots.

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