Are Raiders Better Off Trading QB Marcus Mariota?

Last offseason, the Las Vegas Raiders signed former Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota. The Oregon standout was coming off a season in which he lost his job to Ryan Tannehill. This didn’t prevent Mariota from cashing in as the Silver and Black signed him to a two-year deal for 17.6 million dollars, making him the nineteenth highest-paid quarterback in the entire NFL.

The Raiders could take advantage of an opportunity

Many fans didn’t like the signing due to the money Mariota got as a backup. Then again, the Raiders were very lucky to have Mariota’s services in Week 15 against the Los Angeles Chargers. In that game, quarterback Derek Carr left the game with a groin injury.

The former Heisman Trophy winner gave the offense an instant jolt with his willingness to extend plays, and his aggressiveness. He was 17-of-28 for 226 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. Moreover, he added 88 yards on the ground and another touchdown. His performance made more than a few see ‘8’ get another chance at the starting gig.

Quarterbacks are the NFL’s most valuable currency. This is never more true than in an offseason with so many teams in need of a signal-caller. The Washington Football Team, the Chicago Bears and Indianapolis Colts are some of them, and they will not all have the opportunity to acquire one of the top four prospects in this year’s draft. Therefore, the Raiders would be wise to contact them and see if the interest in Mariota exists.

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What could the Raiders get for Marcus Mariota?

It is highly unlikely that anyone would part ways with a first-round pick to acquire Mariota’s. The last time a team gave up a first-round selection for a quarterback was the Minnesota Vikings. They traded for Sam Bradford after Teddy Bridgewater sustained an injury in 2016. In all honesty, the Raiders may not be able to get much.

The two examples most relatable to the Raiders’ current situation with Mariota are that of Tannehill and Bridgewater. All three of these players were around the same age and had starting experience. They also dealt with injuries and changed teams after posting good numbers in limited action.

Not all the trades are the same

In Tannehill’s case, The Miami Dolphins got a seventh-round selection in 2019 and a 2020 fourth-round pick. In return, the Titans got the quarterback and a sixth-round selection. Looking back, that was an incredible deal for Tennessee, as Tannehill has become a borderline top ten quarterback.

Bridgewater’s case was similar. The Saints gave the New York Jets a third-round pick to acquire his services. This looked like a hefty price to pay for a backup at the time. However, the Saints were proven correct when starter Drew Brees went down with an injury and Bridgewater went undefeated in relief.

Looking at these trades, it seems like the Raiders may only be able to acquire a day three selection for Mariota. Working in Las Vegas favor is the fact that Marcus will be entering the last year of his contract and whoever gets him will not have a long-term attachment to him. This would make him a great stop-gap solution for a team that wants a reliable starter for the upcoming season.

A squad like the Colts, who are losing both Philip Rivers and Jacoby Brissett to free agency, could be willing to offer a fourth-round pick or even a third-round selection for Marcus Mariota.

Would it be worth it?

Raiders’ brass must add pieces to a defense that simply needs to be average to put them firmly in the hunt for a playoff spot. One of the easiest ways they could accomplish this is by ridding themselves of many large contracts on the payroll, including Mariota’s.

Head coach Jon Gruden surely likes having a quarterback of Mariota’s caliber on the roster and will choose to keep him around for the final season of his contract. On the other hand, having almost $11 million more dollars to spend this offseason might have even more value, especially if the Silver and Black are able to add a draft pick in the process.

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Top Photo: Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun

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Carr isn’t worth 2 firsts. He’s never won a playoff game i.e unproven in money time. If you can get a first then the Raiders should take it. Mariota gives you more chances to win a game than Carr and that is a fact. Carr doesn’t run or is even willing to run. Mariota running when the pocket collapses is a nightmare for defenses to try to scheme against. It’s an X factor that Carr simply doesn’t give you. We are better off trading Carr, save the money from his cap hit and then use it to try to fix… Read more »


I think he is a better choice then Carr but if the franchise can’t see he abilities then better off for Marcus to get traded to another team that will use him.

Mark Quinonez

Trade Derek Carr and get some first round picks as Carr is a good NFL quarterback but not a CHAMPIONSHIP QUARTERBACK Period and if you don’t see that then your all stupid people in that organization


No. The Raiders should be interested in trading Derek Carr for a first round pick instead and make Mariota the starter.

Daniel Phan

Only way Gruden trades Carr would be for a team that offers two 1st rounders. Exactly, so that is highly unlikely to happen. Mariota will likely be the player traded away if another team sees him as a potential starter. 3rd or 4th rounder would be great. But once again our backup QB would no longer be as strong will his loss. Mariota did a great job showing everyone how he bounced back in Gruden’s system. If no one trades for him then we can have another quality QB on the roster. Once again, only fools would think Gruden will… Read more »

Brian deponte

Dont trade markus mariota make him up coming seasons make him stsrter quaterback cause he will take raiders to the superbowl and win the superbowl maybe not the first chance but he will and he brings action for your raiders team consistance give him awhile and just watch and 4 years from now acuire my nephew tru deponte for las vegas quater back he is a freshmen king keakuiluie high school but him play i trained him from 5 years old to now 15 years old now if you las vegas raiders start traing him after marcus mariota takes you… Read more »


Think mariota may get traded, if not to Saints, 49’ers, Panthers or Broncos, prolly to be a back up. In my opinion, keep him as insurance for Carr. Need to play him more though just to rest Carr.


Not a fan of Marcus he’s a play extender. But not accurate. We got a great 28 to run the ball. So hopefully MAYOCK and gruden will get it right!

Ronald Tizenor

The Raiders should move on from Carr and let Mariota start. Why would pay Mariota 17.6 million in 2 years and not try to see what yo got? Carr doesn’t read the Blitz well and he doesn’t know when to run out of trouble. He’ll stay in the pocket and let it collapse around him , get hit and fumble , or throw a interception. HE HAS NO QB INSTINCTS! HE’S KRYPTONITE TO THE RAIDERS. I’ve had 8 years of the madness as a fan , and I’ve had it with Carr. I’ve watched him quit mentally on the field… Read more »

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