For the first time since 2014, the Las Vegas Raiders have instability at the quarterback position. Derek Carr has been cast off from his longtime post as the Raiders’ signal caller by the front office like a cow that trusted the butcher with its very life. As soon as this happened, Raider Nation began speculating about who would be the Raiders’ quarterback going forward in an offense that has the potential to be explosive and effective. One name that popped up was that of Tom Brady, who will be a free agent when the new league year begins.
Many in Raider Nation have expressed their disgust over the idea of Brady as a Raider. That is due to the infamous “Tuck Rule game” and their inherent dislike of Brady at the heart of the issue. They are wrong, and here are five reasons why Brady would be a fantastic choice to lead the Raiders in 2023.
Tom Brady Is Not The Quarterback Of The Future
Brady is, at the time of this writing, 45 years old. If he comes to Las Vegas, it will be for a one- or two-year deal. Let’s say the Raiders decide they want to draft a quarterback. Brady wouldn’t threaten their future prospects as he did with Jimmy Garoppolo, Matt Cassel, and Jarrett Stidham. Should the Raiders decide that C.J. Stroud, Hendon Hooker, or another young quarterback is their guy, Brady won’t change that. If Carr were still the quarterback, things would be different. Imagine if the team drafted Stroud in the first round, there’d be questions and consternation everywhere. Brady will make a terrific role model for any potential rookie quarterback.
Tom Brady’s Still Got It
In case you missed it, Brady dragged a substandard Buccaneers team to the playoffs this year. In doing so, Brady had the most completions in the NFL with 490 on 733 attempts for a 66.8% completion rate. Brady had the third-most passing yards in the league with 4,694. He trails only Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert. If you didn’t notice, both those guys are in the Raiders’ division. Oh, and yes, the Raiders won’t beat them without someone who can perform at their level. Brady defeated Mahomes in the Super Bowl a few years ago and did so in blowout fashion. Brady may have lost a few miles per hour on his fastball in his old age, but he’s still one of the best quarterbacks in football.
Tom Brady Would Hold Raiders Accountable
For many years, following a loss, Carr would come out in the press conference and say, “Put it on me.” And finally, the Raiders took him at his word. Would Brady do this? No, he’d get in the coaches’ face during the game and scream and yell. Would Brady be complacent and play behind a bad offensive line? No, he’s got clout; he’d make sure the team drafted or signed quality offensive linemen to protect him. He wouldn’t be satisfied with the lip service paid to a right tackle like Brandon Parker or Jermaine Eluemunor or a guard like Alex Bars. Brady is about winning, and he knows what works and what doesn’t.
This goes for the defense as well. Over the years, when Brady has had a top-notch defense, he’s won the Super Bowl more often than not, and when he’s had a subpar defense, he hasn’t won it. Is Brady going to sit back and let the Raiders trot out another bottom-third defense again? Even if he did, he could at least drag such a unit to the playoffs, though they’d be kicking and screaming. Still, it would be better than what the Raiders are used to.
No. 12 Is The Best Fit For The Josh McDaniels System
Raider fans were elated when Stidham immolated the 49ers defense a few weeks ago. They weren’t used to seeing what a quarterback who actually knew and was comfortable in the McDaniels system could do. And while Stidham was great, the fact of the matter is that Josh McDaniels has won three Super Bowls as an offensive coordinator, and Stidham isn’t the reason why. Brady is. Do you want Davante Adams to put up numbers like Randy Moss did in 2007? Do you want Darren Waller to become the next Rob Gronkowski? Brady can do that. Do you want Josh Jacobs to take a 5-yard pass 80 yards to the house? Brady can do that too.
When Hunter Renfrow was coming out in the draft, everyone assumed the Patriots would draft him. That’s because Brady takes guys like him, and by that, I mean white receivers who are above average, and turns them into household names. Brady would take this Raiders offense, with better weapons than he’s had since 2007, and turn it into an absolute death machine.
“Just Win, Baby”
The Raiders have three Super Bowl wins in franchise history. Only one of them was won by a quarterback drafted by the Raiders, Ken Stabler. The other two were won by Jim Plunkett, who previously played for the 49ers and… the Patriots. Rich Gannon was a Viking and a Chief. The Raiders, more than any other team, have a history of taking castoffs and old guys and winning. Brady has a.749 career winning percentage in 335 games.
It’s easy to sit back and say, “Oh, Tom Brady, I hate that guy; I don’t want him as a Raider.” But think about what being a Raider means. Al Davis said, “The fire that burns the brightest in the Raiders organization is the will to win.” Nobody has won more over the last 22 years than Brady, and nobody has a greater will to win than Brady does. If you don’t think Al Davis would be going after Tom Brady this offseason, you’re out of your mind. It’s high time the Raiders had a true “Commitment to Excellence” again.
*Top Photo: AP Photo/Elise Amendola