The Las Vegas Raiders' offseason will stem around them finding their quarterback for 2023. With Derek Carr either being traded or released, the search for the next signal-caller is of the utmost importance.
Davante Adams, Darren Waller, and Hunter Renfrow are all under contract. The offense is a few interior offensive linemen away from taking the next step. The front office has to decide if they want to utilize their first-round pick or find a veteran on the market.
Early reports signal Tom Brady as the option and other quarterbacks connected to Josh McDaniels. However, Kyle Orton or Cam Newton didn’t affiliate with McDaniels before leading his offense.
Veteran quarterbacks are hitting the market, and possible trade options the Raiders could pursue. If the Raiders can’t land Brady, these players might be in silver and black:
The Raiders beat the Houston Texans 38-20 early in the season, but the game was closer than the actual score. One of the reasons was the play of Davis Mills, who was inconsistent for the Texans in 2022. Mills played better down the stretch helping the Texans lose the number-one pick in the draft.
The reason why he is here is his familiarity with the McDaniels system. Nick Caserio spent time with the New England Patriots and is the general manager out in Houston. He has implanted that offensive philosophy in the Texans, which was there before with Bill O’Brien. That could be enticing to the Raiders, who want a player who understands their scheme and protections.
Raiders could trade for Mills for a seventh or sixth-round pick and allow him to be a bridge for a rookie quarterback.
Coming off a down season, Ryan Tannehill might be seen as replaceable as the Tennessee Titans quarterback. After stringing together back-to-back seasons with over 100 passer ratings, he has returned to earth with Todd Downing as the offensive coordinator. He could be an option for the Raiders in 2023.
Tashan Reed of the Athletic laid out the numbers of why it is a possibility. The scheme reasons are also because of the connection to Adam Gase. Gase was the wide receivers coach for McDaniels while he was in Denver. Tannehill played under Gase for two seasons running a similar offensive scheme to the Raiders.
Tannehill would be a steady veteran that might keep the playmakers happy about the team going forward.
A player who does have that connection to the Raiders' head coach is Jacoby Brissett. Brissett is coming off a solid season that saw him finish top ten in ESPN’s QBR rankings. He is an under-the-radar candidate to be the Raiders starting quarterback.
Brissett was drafted by New England Patriots in 2016 and found ways for him to succeed during his first start. The N.C. State alumni does have his limitations but does not turn the ball over and can deliver to his playmakers. He helps with short yardage and will understand the offense.
If the Raiders go this route, it gives them the flexibility to draft a quarterback early behind him that can develop. Brissett could be the front-runner if the main options don’t work out.
Sam Darnold was expected to be the savior of the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers. While that hasn’t worked out for the former USC Trojan, he is now a free agent. After finishing the season, strong Darnold could be the quarterback the Raiders take a look at.
Darnold has familiarity with the system that is similar to Tannehill. Darnold was Adam Gase's quarterback during his short tenure with the Jets. He struggled under Adam Gase, but Darnold still has flashes of brilliance mixed in with boneheaded mistakes.
It came to fruition in 2022 with Darnold going toe to toe with Tom Brady one week and then having a disastrous performance vs. the New Orleans Saints in Week 18. Either way, Darnold could be a cheap option for the Raiders and compete with a young draft prospect for the starting spot.