The Las Vegas Raiders released Derek Carr and are on the hunt for a new quarterback. The NFL draft experts are bountifully linking the Raiders to rookies C.J. Stroud, Bryce Young, Will Levis, and now University of Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson. The selection of Richardson is confusing, though. Reports have speculated that head coach Josh McDaniels does not want to start over developing a rookie quarterback. Plus, you have to wonder where Davante Adams stands with regard to a rookie. This move may not make sense for several reasons, but the primary one is that Richardson is oddly reminiscent of a former Raiders quarterback, Terrelle Pryor.
Terrelle Pryor had potential as the Raiders’ quarterback
Pryor was Al Davis’s last pick before he passed away in 2011. The Ohio State product stood at 6’4″ and weighed approximately 228 pounds. Pryor was labeled as an above-average athlete with astonishing potential as a quarterback. He ran his 40 time at a blazing speed of 4.38 but struggled with accuracy as he preferred to throw on the move. Pryor was not labeled as a traditional pocket passer, and his accuracy suffered as a result. Nonetheless, Pryor was given an opportunity in the third round of the supplemental draft by Al Davis. Unfortunately, his career did not go as planned.
Pryor possibly didn’t end up in the best situation, as coaching could have fixed his issues with decision-making, accuracy, and footwork. Pryor’s best asset was his legs; as we saw, however, potential could only take him so far. Pryor never solidified his position as a starting quarterback with the Raiders and was eventually traded to the Seattle Seahawks. Pryor ended his career as a wide receiver after switching positions with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2019.
We’ll always remember Pryor for one play, and one play only.
October 27, 2013 ðŸ´â€â˜ ï¸ðŸˆâœï¸ðŸ»
QB Terrelle Pryor ran for a 93-yard touchdown versus the Steelers @ the Oakland Coliseum.
— AFL Godfather ðŸ´â€â˜ ï¸ðŸ‘“ðŸˆ (@NFLMAVERICK) October 27, 2021
The potential is there…Â
Anthony Richardson stands at 6’4″ and weighs approximately 238 pounds. Besides the familiar physical characteristics, NFL Draft Buzz also describes Richardson as an “athletic freak” who is projected to run a 4.40 40-yard dash. Richardson has a cannon for an arm and is a true dual-threat quarterback. Richardson’s rushing ability, similar to Pryor’s, gives the offense an edge where they can beat defenses with Richardson’s legs or in the air.
Richardson’s ceiling may be sky high; however, he displayed the same deficiencies scouts noted about Pryor. Richardson has demonstrated poor mechanics, accuracy issues, and difficulty reading the defense. Richardson would require an exorbitant amount of coaching, and it is unknown if the Raiders have the right coach in the building to fix him.
Does Anthony Richardson to the Raiders makes sense?
Pryor was selected in the third round of the supplemental draft. If the Raiders want to select Richardson in the 2023 NFL Draft, there is a chance they may have to use their seventh overall pick. Josh McDaniels does not appear to want to have a raw rookie quarterback lead their team, and some of his veteran players are on the same page. McDaniels needs to keep those same veterans happy, specifically Davante Adams, and bringing in a project quarterback will not appease the star receiver.
The reality of the new-age quarterback is that a dual-threat rushing quarterback is extremely effective. However, that quarterback has to be an accurate passer as well. Pryor struggled to throw the ball, and while Richardson can launch the ball 70 yards or more, he is also prone to missing wide-open receivers. There is a very real possibility that if the Raiders place their chips in Richardson’s basket, they may end up with a similar ending to the Terrelle Pryor experiment.
*Top Photo: Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images