Derek Carr and Dennis Allen, prior to Allen joining the New Orleans Saints

Derek Carr set to visit the New Orleans Saints: Everything you need to know

The Las Vegas Raiders have high hopes of trading quarterback Derek Carr. There’s one thing stopping them, however: Carr’s no-trade clause. Will the 31-year-old waive his no-trade clause to reunite with Dennis Allen as a member of the New Orleans Saints? If he does, what can the Silver and Black expect to get in return for the veteran signal caller?

Searching around the NFL for a perfect trade can take a lot of time. When it comes to trading Derek Carr, time is something the Raiders don’t have.

If Las Vegas fails to part ways with Carr by February 15th, whether by trade or cut, $40.4 million of the quarterback’s contract becomes guaranteed. This gives the Raiders one day over a week to figure something out, with the team remaining hopeful that a trade partner can be found.

Luckily, the Saints are interested.

Carr is flying to New Orleans tomorrow to meet with Dennis Allen, his former head coach who now coaches the Saints, among other coaches from their organization. If the two sides confirm this is what they want, a trade will happen, and Carr will find himself on a new team for the first time in his professional career.

Let’s back up a second, though. It’s important to understand both how we got here, and what this means.

Derek Carr is visiting the New Orleans Saints; what does this mean?

By understanding how general manager Dave Ziegler is handling Carr’s situation, we’re able to see a bigger picture here.

As soon as Carr was eligible to speak with teams for trade-seeking purposes, via NFL regulations, Ziegler granted him permission to do just that – but only with teams who met the Raiders with a realistic offer for the veteran QB. Now, Carr has permission to speak with the Saints, and is flying out to New Orleans tomorrow. This can only mean one thing: The Saints are not only interested in the Fresno State alum, but put forth a reasonable trade offer, contingent on the two sides agreeing it’s for the best once they speak to each other.

That’s the surface of it. We can dig a bit deeper to find additional information.

Per OverTheCap, the Saints are set to walk into 2023 with negative $60 million in cap room; the lowest league-wide. Carr will carry a $34.8 million cap hit with him next season, although the Raiders can absorb some of that. Either way you look at it, New Orleans needs to dump a big contract or two to make this work.

The biggest cap hits on the Saints’ payroll include: Cam Jordan ($25.6 million), Marshon Lattimore ($22.4 million), Ryan Ramczyk ($21.4 million) and Andrus Peat ($18.3 million). Raider Nation, if you favor one of those players, get excited; one is likely part of this potential trade. Per Jason_OTC, the founder of OnTheCap, cutting players doesn’t get the Saints out of this hole. If they were to cut every player with a positive net cap savings, the Saints would create a mere $23 million, he notes.

Getting an idea of what the Raiders will receive in this potential Carr trade

All-in-all, New Orleans will have to trade one or two of their big contracts this offseason, likely involving one in this deal.

For the Raiders, Lattimore makes a lot of sense. Defensive coordinator Patrick Graham has remained adamant about adding starting-caliber cornerbacks, and the Raiders struck out with Averett in 2022. Now, Averett, Sidney Jones, and Rock Ya-Sin are all slated to be free agents, with the latter being a priority.

However, if you add Lattimore, retaining Ya-Sin is no longer a priority. It would still be ideal to keep the young cornerback around, but Ziegler now has flexibility at the position. The best part: There’s still enough cap room left to acquire Aaron Rodgers.

While less likely, it’s still possible New Orleans dumps their big contracts in other trades, and sticks with a draft pick for Carr. If this is the route the Saints take, any pick between a third and fifth-rounder should be expected. It’s not so much that Carr is a third through fifth-round caliber quarterback, but the ball is completely in the court of all 31 other teams. The Raiders are just looking to get anything for their quarterback instead of cutting him, and everyone is aware.

Of course, none of this matters if either Carr or Allen decide this isn’t a fit.

*Top Photo: USA TODAY Sports

Join The Ramble Email List

3 thoughts on “Derek Carr set to visit the New Orleans Saints: Everything you need to know”

  1. The Saints are likely to be eager to trade Cam Jordan, but it’s unlikely that he’ll get cut if he’s not traded. His dead cap number of $23.5 mil is almost as big as his cap hit if on the roster of $25.6 mil. And I imagine Ziegler will be reluctant to trade for another Edge guy over 30 who they’ll have to keep through the 2024 season.
    Might the Raiders go with a healthy and re-signed Rock Ya-Sin, a healthy Nate Hobbs, and a rising Tyler Hall at corner and devote cap space to other needs instead of being locked into an average of $22.7 mil for two years for Lattimore?
    Similar thinking applies to Ramczyk. The Raiders should be able to re-sign Eluemunor for much less than an average of $22.9 mil for two years.
    Peat would be a big upgrade over Bars at a big cap hit of $18.4 mil for two years.
    The way I see it, the a deal might get done with Ranczyk or Peat + a pick after the second round. That might be hard to pull off with so little time left before the Raiders have to cut Carr.

    1. Hi Will. I appreciate your thoughts on the matter.
      First, let me start by saying it’s entirely likely more than one of the aforementioned players get traded. For Derek Carr specifically? No, but in general. So I do think all options are in play for the Raiders, as all should be available, and it should be whoever Ziegler favors.
      For Cam, I don’t think it makes a lot of sense for the Raiders. The reason is Maxx and Chandler. Chandler didn’t do what fans wanted him to do last season, most notably pile up the stat sheet, but he really filled Graham’s run gap well off the edge. I find it very unlikely the team moves on from him. So, it’s like you’re adding Cam for no real reason, as great as Cam is.
      For Ramczyk, I’m a fan myself, but I’m not so sure Zielger and co. are based on their love for Eluemunor who, as you alluded to, would cost much less than Ramczyk. It would be a nice move undoubtedly, but not sure it’s the one they’ll check for.
      As for Peat, it’s a given that Parham is safe, and there’s no real reason James won’t play his final year as a Raider. That said, James could move to the other guard spot if Peat comes, but it doesn’t really make much sense. However, going back to Ramczyk, it does make sense to move Eluemunor to the guard position he played under Gruden so Ramczyk can play right tackle. But, Eluemunor has been a favorite at tackle under McDaniels, both as a Raider and Patriot. So not sure it’s something the coaches have considered.
      Onto why I think Lattimore makes the most sense:
      The team wanted to move Hobbs around often in 2022, but this experiment simply didn’t work well. It’s likely Hobbs simply goes back to the slot position where he exceled in 2021, instead of the outside where he, to be blunt, did not look good. This gives the team Ya-Sin and Lattimore on the outside, assuming Ya-Sin returns. Of course, with Lattimore you no longer have to prioritize a Ya-Sin return should the price be too far off or whatever happens. They can still keep the Hobbs moving around experiment alive as well with the addition of Lattimore and retaining Ya-Sin by letting Hobbs fill in when one of those two needs a moment to breathe, and Hall can come on for Hobbs where he proved his worth. Hall was sensational in the slot, as was Hobbs in 2021. The problem is, unless it’s a four receiver set they’re facing, the two really cannot coexist on the field. Enter Lattimore.

  2. This feels a lot like more used car (excuse the pun) sales spiel from the Raiders. First we hear they’re letting him talk to teams who have a trade deal in place, but no names mentioned. Now we hear he’ll be flying to NO to talk to the Saints. Even if Carr renegotiates his contact, the Saints are still in cap purgatory and will have to trade away some of their more talented players. That doesn’t sound like a team that are going to be genuine contenders any time soon, even in that weak division. Carr has said he wants to be competing for championships so the Saints don’t make much sense from that perspective. This feels more like the Raiders are trying to shake the likes of the Bucks, Colts, Jets, Commanders, and others mentioned elsewhere, into coming to the negotiating table.

Share your thoughts here, Raider Nation...

%d bloggers like this: