It has become blatantly apparent that the Las Vegas Raiders organization is moving on from Derek Carr. The big question is whether or not his replacement will be a draft prospect or a veteran like Tom Brady. Here, we give a comprehensive scouting report on C.J. Stroud and see if he is the ideal guy to take over this Raiders’ offense.
Raiders Scouting: Strengths For C.J. Stroud
Stroud has ideal size and athleticism paired with an NFL arm. His ability to sense pressure and get the ball out quickly is far better than that of former Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields. He has beautiful ball placement and touch on intermediate and deep throws. Accuracy will not be a concern for him. This would bode well for Davante Adams and Darren Waller. He flashes the ability to anticipate throws and plays in sync with the offense. He has already shown he can pull off back-shoulder fades with his receivers. Furthermore, he appears to be the type of character you’d want as your franchise signal-caller.
Here you can find a clip of Stroud making an incredible back-shoulder throw under pressure.
Raiders Scouting: Weaknesses For C.J. Stroud
Stroud lacks the elite, top-end physical tools that coaches love to develop. His decision-making before the national championship games was rather conservative. He had a lot of opportunities to improvise but rarely showed it besides that one game. More often than not, Stroud struggles under pressure, which is an area of concern, especially for the Raiders.
He’ll at least have his blindside protected in a Raiders uniform, but he needs to improve this, as the O-line in Las Vegas is questionable. He also has the issue of not always getting his cleats in the ground, affecting his release and short accuracy. However, those are issues that can be worked on quickly, especially with a guy like Josh McDaniels.
Is the Ohio State product a fit in Josh McDaniels’ system?
Many people would think Josh McDaniels runs a pro-style offense, but it’s truly a spread scheme. The scheme revolves around a quick-hitting, horizontal passing game with a mixture of deep passes. This scheme is very similar to the one Ryan Day used at Ohio State, which means transitioning to this Raiders offense would be relatively easy. Overall, I think he is an excellent pairing for Las Vegas.
However, he is an uncertain option because they’ll likely have to trade up. It might not be worth it, depending on how far they’d have to trade up to get him. Trading up to pick three would be too much, but trading up to pick five probably would be worth it. On the other hand, trading up to pick five wouldn’t take much and would take Detroit and likely Carolina out of the running for Stroud. Whether or not it requires a trade-up, this is a realistic guy to hope to become the next starter for the Raiders.
*Top Photo: Getty Images Pool