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Should the Raiders consider trading QB Derek Carr?

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There is a case to be made for both sides of the argument.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Oakland Raiders Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

One of the bigger stories in the 2019 off-season will be what Jon Gruden and the Raiders decide to do with Derek Carr. There is a very realistic chance that Carr will be playing for a different team in 2019. But would it be the right move for the Silver & Black to trade their franchise quarterback?

Trade him

After a rough start to the season, Carr has played the best football we have seen since his magical 2016 season. Despite being sacked 48 times and playing on an offense lacking weapons, he has yet to throw an interception the past ten games. Carr’s stock is up, making for a perfect sell high situation.

With Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert returning for his senior year, the 2019 draft is mighty thin for teams in need of a signal caller. That only further increases Carr’s trade value, as teams like the Giants, Jaguars, and Washington may be tempted to offer the Raiders a sweet deal to acquire the five year veteran.

It makes no sense for the Silver & Black to pay Carr over $20 million a year when the rest of their roster isn’t close to a playoff caliber team. Instead, Gruden could package him for multiple draft picks and build up the roster. Then, in 2020, when Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert, and Jake Fromm will all likely declare, Gruden could pick his quarterback and enter Las Vegas with a fresh start.

The Rams, Chiefs, Texans, and Eagles have all benefited with their quarterbacks on rookie contracts. So would the Raiders, as they would have five years to build an elite roster with a talented young quarterback on a five-year rookie deal.

Keep him

A franchise quarterback is one of the toughest positions to find in sports. While Carr had his struggles earlier in the year, he has improved each week as he has become more comfortable in Gruden’s offense. As for his contract, Carr’s cap hit will proportionally decrease each year as the salary cap continues to skyrocket. He is now only the 6th highest paid quarterback in the NFL, a year and a half removed from signing what was at the time the wealthiest contract extension in NFL history.

At just 27 years old, the Raiders could easily get another 10 years out of Carr should they decide to keep him. He has all of the physical tools to succeed in the NFL, and also has the work ethic and leadership required to set the tone in the locker room. Despite the franchise’s struggles, he has made it clear he wants to be a Raider for life.

With Gruden signed to a ten-year contract, Carr will finally have the stability required to unleash his full potential. So why would the team trade a player beloved by the fans, coaching staff, and his teammates?

And who would replace him? There is no clear top quarterback in the 2019 class, so Gruden would likely have to wait until the 2020 draft to find Carr’s permanent replacement. Would the veteran coach really tank the 2019 season before it even began, and how would that go over with owner Mark Davis? It seems that if Gruden doesn’t believe Carr is the franchise quarterback, he should wait until the 2019 off-season to trade him when he will have a replacement ready.


Should the Raiders look to trade Derek Carr?

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