Josh Rosen's weird NFL career could include a second trade before his third season

Frank Schwab
·3-min read

Try finding another career path quite like the one Josh Rosen is on.

When you’re a top-10 pick at quarterback, teams expect you to be there a dozen years. Even if you’re bad it’ll be three or four years at least. Rosen hasn’t had it that easy.

Teams have called the Miami Dolphins to inquire about the availability of Rosen, Mike Giardi of NFL Media said. While the Dolphins “are in no hurry to trade him” according to Giardi, it seems like a good bet he’ll move at some point. The Dolphins drafted Tua Tagovailoa fifth overall a month ago. They also have veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick. There’s no room for Rosen anymore.

Rosen hasn’t done himself any favors, but this is fairly ridiculous.

Could Josh Rosen be traded again?

Rosen started off as the 10th overall pick of the 2018 draft to the Arizona Cardinals. Coming out of UCLA, he was considered a pro-ready prospect. And Rosen was bad as a rookie, though it’s impossible to tell how much was on him and how much was due to a coaching staff in over its head.

Either way, a new coaching staff came in for the Cardinals, and Kliff Kingsbury wanted Kyler Murray to run his offense. The Cardinals took Murray with the first pick. They traded Rosen to the Dolphins for a second-rounder.

The Dolphins were a bad team but at least Rosen had a shot to play. Coach Brian Flores at one point said Rosen would be his quarterback the rest of last season. Then halfway into the next game, Rosen was benched. Rosen started just three games. He had one touchdown and five interceptions. His passer rating was 52. Miami was bad last season, but Fitzpatrick fared much better than Rosen.

So for the second straight season, Rosen’s team made a top-five pick at quarterback. And Rosen became expendable. Again.

Could Josh Rosen be on the move again? (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)
Could Josh Rosen be on the move again? (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

Rosen has not played well

For all of the bad things Rosen has put on tape — and a 63.5 passer rating over 502 career attempts is undeniably bad — he is just 23 years old with a top-10 draft pedigree. Even in a league that is so deep at quarterback that Cam Newton can’t find a starting job, someone would take on Rosen as a reclamation project.

That might be why the Dolphins are hesitant to trade him. It would be for much less than the second-round pick they gave up to get him. Rosen’s base salaries the next two years are just $750,000 and $920,000. Fitzpatrick is 37 and the Dolphins will soon need someone as a backup to Tagovailoa. Why not just hold onto Rosen as a third quarterback?

Still, most NFL teams don’t like to do anything unconventional at quarterback, and having a former top-10 pick as a third quarterback is unusual.

Meanwhile Rosen is in limbo, with no clear path to playing time for yet another team that has moved on to another young quarterback. Rosen hasn’t played well when he has been given the chance, but he hasn’t caught any breaks yet either.