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Does McCown, Bridgewater combination take Jets out of play for a first-round quarterback?

After signing Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater, the Jets will likely look to draft an immediate impact player instead of a franchise quarterback with the sixth overall pick.

The decision of the Jets to re-sign quarterback Josh McCown seemed to be the first half of a two-part approach to the position, allowing the team to draft a rookie with the sixth overall pick in the draft. The decision of the Jets to add quarterback Teddy Bridgewater complicates the situation.

For starters, it’s clear that, between Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg, one will be getting a Water Pik and the other will be getting fired. And if the Jets indeed use pick No. 6 on a quarterback, both could be in danger.

Bridgewater likewise could be in jeopardy, based on his health or lack thereof. ESPN reports that Bridgewater’s deal has a value of $5 million. The real question is how much of it is guaranteed? If none or little is, Bridgewater may have to prove himself to get the $5 million.

Given that Bridgewater is still 25, it’s possible that the Jets could start out with McCown, stick with him as long as they’re in the mix for a possible playoff berth, and then switch to Bridgewater in an effort to evaluate whether he could be the starter in 2019 and beyond. It’s a low-risk proposition for the Jets, giving them a chance to possibly witness Bridgewater develop into what the Vikings had hoped he’d be before a devastating knee injury in August 2016 ended what could have been his breakout season, and derailed his career.

Which means that it makes sense to refrain from going all in for a rookie. There’s a chance that Bridgewater could be what they would hope a rookie to be: A young quarterback who can become a year-in, year-out starter.