Even though we’re more than 175 days from the start of the NFL season, quarterbacks are by far the biggest talk of the sports world. On the same day that Green Bay’s on-again, off-again relationship with Aaron Rodgers was announced to be back on via a four-year/$200 million contract, the blockbuster trade of Seattle Seahawks legend Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos for a hefty package (including QB Drew Lock, TE Noah Fant and a host of draft picks) was revealed. While we wait for official word from the teams, our investing brains have already started thinking about the players and cards who’ll be most affected by the bombshell move.
Back in ’19, Sutton looked like the second coming of Brandon Marshall. He showed good hands, great speed and crisp route running. Then he got injured. Then the Drew Lock-Teddy Bridgewater experiment was meh. Sutton had some good moments in ’21, but with a more-than-capable gunslinger like Wilson in the same huddle, Sutton could get back to the 70-receptions, 1,000-yards kind of season. Also, with fellow Broncos receiver Jerry Jeudy returning from an ankle injury, Sutton might have even more of the stage to himself. Considering all of that, cards like Sutton’s 2018 Prizm PSA 10 may go from $35 back up to the $70s where it was before last season began.
Where does all this news leave Mr. Bridegwater? The 29-year-old QB came to Denver last season via trade. Some thought he’d be the team’s answer at the position. Bridgewater wasn’t bad for the Broncos (3,052 passing yards, 18 TDs), but the 7-10 team knows it’ll need more if it’s to get out of the mediocrity mud and really fight with Kansas City and L.A. in the AFC West. If the free agent signs up for a back-up role, he easily becomes one of the best No. 2s in the NFL. However, teams like Pittsburgh and Washington might be searching for QB1s. If Bridgewater is allowed to flourish in the right spot, his rookie card could see some positive action in the market. Not that that’s really saying much, seeing as how the quarterback’s 2014 Topps Chrome PSA 10 is getting less than $20 these days, down some 102% since September ’21.
And then there’s DeKaylin Zecharius Metcalf. What was once a beautiful thing between D.K. and Russ (more than 1,300 receiving yards for Metcalf in ’20) fizzed a bit last year (967). Still, there was quiet optimism that DK’s numbers could get back to normal in ’22. But with Wilson gone and Lock seemingly given Seattle’s QB keys, Metcalf’s outlook is all of a sudden foggier than an early morning on Puget Sound. Some investors will envision the worst and attempt to get rid of the wideout’s cards. Prices might dip for a minute with his ’19 Optic. But hobbyists who are cool and calm will see this as a buying opportunity. They’ll realize that No. 14 is a spectacular talent who’ll make the most of his opportunities—however they come. Yes, the first few weeks of getting acquainted with Lock will present its lumps, but one of the NFL’s brightest receiving talents should be up for the task.
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