With the NFL Playoffs in full swing, teams like the Las Vegas Raiders that didn’t make it are looking towards the draft and free agency. The Raiders have their receiving corps locked down for the next few years; that’s good news. It means that Darren Waller, Davante Adams, and Hunter Renfrow are all under contract through at least 2025. What’s up in the air is: who will throw them the ball, and who will protect the quarterback? Whether it’s Tom Brady or someone else, the O-line needs to be addressed.
While the Raiders currently have around $27 million in salary cap space, without Derek Carr on the team in 2023, they will have closer to $50 million in cap space for free agency without many notable free agents on the offensive side of the ball to re-sign. Here are a few 2023 free agents the Raiders should consider adding to improve the team going forward.
Raiders’ Target No. 1: Tom Brady
Yes, Brady is old and not quite as sharp as he used to be, as seen by his disastrous playoff game against Dallas. That doesn’t mean that he wouldn’t be an improvement for the Raiders. He knows the offensive system already, and he could have a huge season throwing to the Raiders’ tremendous skill players. If Brady does come to Vegas, rebuilding the offensive line would be paramount, as Brady doesn’t have the mobility he used to have. Signing Brady would be a win-win: if he’s successful, the Raiders make the playoffs, and if not, his presence wouldn’t prevent the Raiders from drafting their quarterback of the future in 2023 or 2024, both stacked draft classes for quarterbacks.
Raiders’ Target No. 2: Kaleb McGary
Like Josh Jacobs, McGary was a 2019 draftee whose fifth-year option was declined by his team. And just like Jacobs, McGary enjoyed a career year, putting together an excellent season at right tackle for the Falcons. He was one of the very best tackles in the NFL in 2022 at run blocking. In fact, Pro Football Focus graded him 91.6 in that department. It seems like the Raiders have had instability at right tackle for over a decade. So, a young player like the 27-year-old McGary would solidify the position for the next several years.
Raiders’ Target No. 3: Isaac Seumalo
No matter who the new Raiders quarterback ends up being, they will need more talent on the offensive line. After missing significant time due to injury in 2020 and 2021, Seumalo had a career year for the Eagles in 2022. The 6’3″ and 303-pound guard didn’t allow any quarterback hits over the last eight weeks of the 2022 season. He looks to be rounding into form as one of the best interior linemen in the NFL at the right time. That could mean a big payday come free agency time. At 29 years old and with relatively low wear and tear for a guard, Seumalo’s best days may be ahead of him.