Before you even say it the answer is NO! I am not going to try to tell you that Landry Jones is a good option to be the successor to Ben Roethlisberger. It’s clear he’s just not that guy. What I will tell you is that he has done enough to do two things. We have seen enough now to be comfortable in saying that Jones is clearly one of the better back up quarterbacks in the league. If and when Ben does retire, Landry Jones would be a good option to hold down the fort while the Steelers groom the next franchise quarterback. With this kind of offensive talent, hell he may even be able to get the team into the playoffs. Long term though he’s not the type of quarterback needed to win big in the NFL. The other thing we can now see is maybe, just maybe Landry Jones has put enough on tape to convince another team he may actually be good. In other words, the Steelers actually have an asset here they could flip for a decent draft pick.
The New England Patriots have been doing it for years. They draft a quarterback, give him limited exposure in a fantastic offense, then trade that player for draft picks. It all started for them with the Matt Cassel trade in 2008. New England turned a 7th round quarterback into a second round pick from Kansas City (a washed up Mike Vrabel was also included in that deal). In a far less profitable deal, the Patriots traded backup Ryan Mallett to the Texans for a 7th round draft choice. This season New England has traded not one, but two backup quarterbacks for assets. Jacoby Brissett was traded before the season for wide receiver Phillip Dorsett, who was a former first rounder himself for the Indianapolis Colts. Finally, the big one happened at the trade deadline as Jimmy Garoppolo was moved to the 49ers for an early second round pick. That’s some pretty good returns for players who did next to nothing in the league.
The point here is the Steelers need to strike while the iron is hot, or maybe in this case luke warm. Landry Jones will probably never have more value than right now. He’s only 28 years old, and under contract for next season for the small sum of only $2.2 million. He’s also won a few games as a starter in this league, and looked ok in doing it. There will be no shortage of teams looking for quarterbacks going into next season. At this point Pittsburgh could surely get a 5th round pick at least for Jones. It’s not out of the realm of possibility they could squeeze out say a late 3rd rounder in the right scenario. Even Josh Dobbs could become an asset at some point if Roethlisberger could hang around for two or three more seasons. The moral of the story is follow the Patriots lead and get something for Landry Jones while you still can. It’s a formula that’s worked out quite well for them, and could do the same for the Steelers.