Marcus Mariota’s status with the Las Vegas Raiders for the 2021 season appears to be nearing resolution. Looking at it from all sides, it would benefit everyone involved to keep the signal-caller.
The quarterback position continues to generate heated debate every offseason amongst Raider Nation. There’s been much hearsay about the Silver and Black acquiring Deshaun Watson and Russell Wilson this offseason, with none of it turning out to be true. Instead, we’re sitting here in late March with the only confirmed quarterback news centering around Marcus Mariota.
Nevertheless, there are different angles surrounding this continuing development, most having to do with money. Finances aside, Mariota staying in Las Vegas is the best outcome for all parties involved, who is still on the Raiders’ at the time of writing.
The Raiders would be wise to keep Mariota
Unless there’s a blockbuster trade at some point, Derek Carr will be the starting quarterback in 2021. While he’s one of the more efficient signal-callers in the NFL, his position shouldn’t be cemented considering the team’s performance. Keeping Mariota ensures he gives Carr a push this offseason. After all, there’s nothing wrong with some competition, right? Due to Mariota’s health and an altered offseason amid a pandemic, a quarterback battle didn’t happen last year. A ‘QB controversy’ could be exactly what this team needs when you consider how flat the team has played in the final stage of the past couple of seasons.
Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal recently indicated that the Raiders do indeed want Mariota around but for the right price. If Mariota can lower his number from the original $10.7 million he was supposed to make, then ‘8’ and ‘4’ will indeed duke it out in 2021.
Mariota should take a pay cut this season
Taking a pay cut is the only way that Mariota will stay in Silver and Black. Unfortunately for him, it makes the most sense financially speaking. Bonsignore pointed out that the market for ‘8’ has essentially dried up after most teams that needed a quarterback have already addressed the position. Citing Mitch Trubisky’s one-year $2.5 million contract with Buffalo Bills as the latest example for a backup quarterback signing.
Clearly, it makes too much sense for Mariota to sign for less than what he believes he deserves this offseason. Instead, ride it out and wait for a possible opportunity to start again if Carr goes down. He could easily cash in next year judging from his small sample we witnessed against the Los Angeles Chargers.
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*Top Photo: Associated Press/John Locher