The Las Vegas Raiders were smart to sign Marcus Mariota this past free agency. As the old adage says, the second most important player in a football team is the backup quarterback.
The Raiders released quarterback DeShone Kizer per Field Yates of ESPN. His tenure with the team lasted less than one year. The team claimed him last season after being a favorite of general manager Mike Mayock’s. Nevertheless, his tenure with the team was close to the end when Las Vegas added Mariota. Mike Glennon was the second-string quarterback for the Raiders in 2019. Once the team showed him the door, Kizer became the backup quarterback by default.
Originally a second-round pick, Kizer didn’t develop into the quarterback analysts and Raiders brass expected him to. Moreover, Mariota is the better player at this point of their respective careers. For those reasons, the team parted ways with Kizer.
Why It Made Sense to Release Kizer
Although Mariota comes with a $9.5 million price tag, he could take over the team in case Derek Carr falters or goes down with an injury. Moreover, Mariota’s salary is on par with what a high-end backup makes quarterback
Wins are not a quarterback stat, but Mariota’s 29-32 record at the helm is considerably better than Kizer’s 0-15. Knowing that a team’s backup quarterback is one injury away from seeing the field, the Raiders must’ve felt Mariota gave them a better chance to win than Kizer did.
With Kizer’s departure, the Raiders quarterback room is taking shape ahead the 2020 season. Mariota will back up Carr and Nathan Peterman will either be third string quarterback or be part of their special teams. Speaking of Peterman, the Raiders might’ve seen something in the quarterback and possibly thought his ceiling was higher than Kizer’s.
The 2020 season is still some months away (if it proceeds), but it seems like the Raiders went into the offseason with a plan in mind and they are executing it. So far, the quarterback position looks better than it did last year.
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