Should There Be a Market for Mike Glennon?
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers hold the number-one overall pick in the NFL Draft. Those Buccaneers didn't fare very well well at the quarterback position in 2014. With both Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota believed to be worthy of that top selection, more likely than not there will be a new quarterback under center -- or in shotgun -- in Tampa starting in 2015.
That brings the future of Mike Glennon into doubt. (Not that there was much certainty surrounding Glennon before the Buccaneers finished with the worst record in the league last year.)
There’s been rumored to be a trade market developing Glennon, and over the past few weeks, Buccaneers head coach Lovie Smith has thrown out some lukewarm coach speak regarding Glennon’s spot on the roster. Smith has said such encouraging things like, “Mike Glennon is on our roster because we think he can play,” and “No one is working harder than Mike Glennon at improving his body and becoming a better quarterback.”
Should teams really be interested in him?
Glennon by the Numbers
According to our Net Expected Points (NEP) metric -- you can read more about NEP in our glossary -- Glennon provided zero value throwing the ball on a per drop back basis a year ago. His Passing NEP per drop back was 0.00 a year ago, the same per-play value as Jay Cutler and EJ Manuel. While a zero may seem like an average result, that’s is not the case. Across quarterbacks who dropped back at least 100 times last season, the average Passing NEP per drop back was 0.07 in 2014, or Ryan Tannehill. So while Glennon technically provided a "zero" value, his play was below average compared to the league average.
Glennon’s short stint in 2014 was, however, an improvement on his rookie season statistics. In 2013, he had a Passing NEP per drop back of -0.05, 32nd out of 45 qualified quarterbacks. In 2014, Glennon also improved his yards per attempt, touchdown rate and sack rate from his rookie year.
One thing Glennon also had in his favor: he wasn’t Josh McCown. McCown finished 2014 with a Passing NEP per drop back of -0.09, 39th out of 43 100-plus attempt quarterbacks. Glennon clearly didn’t have a large sample of plays, but finishing 0.09 Passing NEP per drop back above a quarterback with the same surrounding cast says something about Glennon. Though, it could also just say numerous things about McCown.
In Glennon's two seasons, there's been little to indicate he will be a top-tier quarterback. But at the same time, there have also been signs pointing towards teams doing worse. In this market, teams have valued that aspect.
Much of the quarterback market has made little sense through the offseason. McCown, at age 35, got $6.25 million guaranteed from the Cleveland Browns. Matt Cassel was acquired for something more than nothing in a trade with the hope of becoming Buffalo’s starting quarterback. Sam Bradford was traded to Philadelphia for Nick Foles and a draft pick. None of these moves are taking any of these teams to the next level, but the need to have something at the game’s most important position causes teams to do strange and sometimes illogical things.
What the quarterback market this offseason has shown us is that franchises know little about the market for quarterbacks. Cassel was traded along with a sixth-round pick for a fifth- and seventh-round selection in this year’s draft after dropping back to pass just 78 times and having a Passing NEP per drop back of -0.09 last year. Meanwhile Ryan Fitzpatrick, who was just above average at 0.08 Passing NEP per drop back, was shipped from Houston to the New York Jets for a seventh-round pick. Matt Moore, who is still only 30 years old, saw no market and returned to Miami as Tannehill’s backup.
Based on past moves, there probably should be some type of market for Glennon. He won’t be great, but he’s still cheap and young enough to optimistically hope for improvement. Giving up a sixth- or seventh-round pick for Glennon would be more valuable to a team than what the Bills gave up for Cassel. Even Case Keenum was traded for a seventh-round pick...again.
The Buccaneers might not get blown away with any offers, but then again, with how some quarterbacks have been demanded over the past month, who knows? With Tampa Bay starting their future with a new quarterback, it would return better value to find out.