Derek Carr has been the Las Vegas Raiders starting quarterback for the last seven years, and it seems like that won’t change any time soon. However, Marcus Mariota’s status with the organization may not be as clear, and he could end up getting traded.
The Raiders aren’t interested in trading Carr per NFL insider Adam Caplan. In fact, he says there’s a belief around the league he may be getting a contract extension. He adds that last year this time he was 100 percent available in trade but that’s not the case anymore.
On the other hand, Mariota is garnering interest from other teams around the league and believes the Raiders will end up trading him. Despite his injury history, clubs liked what they saw last year coming off the bench in Week 15. He was 29-of-32 for 226 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He made plays with his legs and gave Las Vegas a shot at winning the game even though they ultimately lost 27-30 to the Los Angeles Chargers.
The Raiders quarterback situation looks clearer
Carr has been the least of the Raiders’ concerns in the last few years. As much as he could improve, their defense, lack of talent in key positions, and questionable coaching decisions have been the main reason for their stagnation. Not too long ago though, it looked like Las Vegas would pursue Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson.
You may or may not like Carr. Nevertheless, by making it clear that they’re working on an extension, the Raiders’ quarterback situation is becoming clearer. Whether they bring in someone else or keep ‘4’, Las Vegas can’t afford to have uncertainty at the most important position. If they extend Carr, they will then be able to focus their attention on fixing other areas of the roster.
On the other hand, dealing Mariota will help the Raiders. They need to get as much cap relief as they can and trading the quarterback would free $11.3 million in cap space. Moreover, they would get a pick or a player, so it makes sense to entertain phone calls about his availability.
The Raiders need to make significant changes if they want to compete in 2021. Solidifying their quarterback situation is one step in the right direction. If they make the right moves in free agency, they could have their first winning season in head coach Jon Gruden’s four-year stint with the team.
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Top Photo: Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun