During the lead-up to free agency, NBCSportsWashington.com will evaluate a handful of pro QBs the Redskins could acquire for the 2019 season. Up today: Case Keenum.
Age: 31 years old
Key career stats: 54 starts across seven seasons (26-28 record), career passer rating of 84.5, 64 touchdowns against 42 interceptions, 22 of those 64 TDs came in 2017 with the Vikings
2019 contract situation: Carries a cap number of $21 million for the Broncos ($7 million guaranteed), Denver would save $11 million and incur a cap hit of $10 million if they cut him
Analysis: When making the case for the Redskins to acquire Case Keenum (truly sorry for that, won't happen again) — either in a trade or as a free agent — there are far more reasons on the Don't do it side of the argument than there are on the Yep, he's the one side.
Keenum's 2017 campaign with the Vikings is like the one exam you aced in a college course, a test you did so well on that it's enough to keep your grade afloat even though you struggled on every other assignment in the class.
In that year, the veteran posted by far his best touchdown total, yards per attempt, yards per completion and passer rating and QBR. However, every other part of his career suggests he's a fringe starter, or very good backup.
Is he a tick or two better than Colt McCoy? Sure. But is the difference that obvious that Washington would be compelled to make a move for him? No.
And that ties into another reason Keenum checks in as a less-than-appealing option for the QB-needy 'Skins. McCoy is already on the roster and has a cap number of $3.375 million, while Alex Smith's is north of $20 million. Keenum's talent simply won't be worth his estimated $7-$10 million yearly price tag for the Burgundy and Gold.
As the Redskins look to solve their QB conundrum over the next few months, they'll be forced to evaluate the cost, upside and risk of every passer. This offseason, the cost portion is especially vital.
Taking a rookie at the top of the draft has lots of upside and wouldn't be expensive, but that's major draft capital to spend and there's always risk in committing to a rookie. Signing a vet like Ryan Fitzpatrick, meanwhile, is another cheap play, yet it's one that doesn't bring with it much upside.
Therein lies the problem with Keenum, whom Denver would love to trade but will likely eventually cut. The cost will be there for Bruce Allen and Jay Gruden, but the upside isn't. He's on the wrong side of both factors.
Instead, the Redskins would be better off rolling with McCoy and a more affordable signing or McCoy and a first-year signal caller. Washington's limited in their choices to fix their issue under center, but more sensible ones exist outside of Keenum.
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