Understandably, there have been some nervous folks in the Las Vegas Raiders’ fan base in the past 24 hours.
That’s what happens when one of the best players in the league makes national headlines, stating he is currently not on the same page with the team’s brass about the current direction of the team.
In comments made to The Ringer that were published Tuesday, Raiders’ star wide receiver Davante Adams was quoted as saying this, among other things: “[The front office] thinks this is the best bet for us right now to put us in a position to be urgent. “We don’t see eye-to-eye on what we think is best for us right now.”
Adams was referring to the current direction of the offense in those comments. Raiders’ general manager Dave Ziegler and coach Josh McDaniels have talked about the importance of building the team. Adams, who turns 31 in December, has an urgency to win.
“I don’t have enough time for that,” Adams said to The Ringer about a total rebuild in Las Vegas.
A rebuild seemed like it was the furthest thing from Ziegler’s and McDaniels’ minds when they sent first-and-second round draft picks to the Green Bay Packers for Adams in March, 2022, just weeks after they were hired by Las Vegas owner Mark Davis to take over a 10-7 playoff team. The Raiders also signed several players to extension that offseason. Two of them, quarterback Derek Carr and tight end Darren Waller, are gone.
When the trade was made, Adams was naturally thrilled. He should have been. He was reuniting with his close friend and college teammate, Carr. He was joining the team he rooted for as a child in the Bay Area when the Raiders were based in Oakland and he had recently bought a home in Las Vegas.
“I guess it was meant to be,” a beaming Adams said at his introductory press conference at the Raiders’ headquarters.
Fast forward 14 months, things aren’t what Adams expected them to be. His reunion with Carr lasted 15 games and the Raiders don’t appear to be the contender he was expecting them to be.
So, are the Raiders and Adams on the brink of a divorce?
I wouldn’t go that quite far yet. Clearly, he’s surprised by the turn of events, but Adams also stated to The Ringer that he is committed to helping the team win big.
“I’m going to have to buy into this and try to be as optimistic as possible,” he told the website. “It’s not what I expected to happen, but it’s something that’s the reality now ... My goal is to win a Super Bowl with this team.”
So, expect to see a motivated Adams as long as he’s wearing the Silver and Black.
Tuesday night, Adams posted a recent photo of him and Ziegler in a likely subtle attempt to calm the talk of his discontent.
Just a few minutes ago. pic.twitter.com/jq4d2Ncwnr— Vincent Bonsignore (@VinnyBonsignore) May 17, 2023
I truly don’t think Adams is close to wanting to leave the Raiders. But clearly there are things that have made him uncomfortable. He has already shown he’s not afraid to ask to leave an organization as he did in Green Bay. He can do it again at some point, but we’re not there yet.
Yet, if the losing continues and the rebuild looks to be daunting, I could see this getting to the point where Adams will want to go to a third team in his pursuit of winning, especially because of his advancing age.
My read is Adams is let’s check back in two years. If the #Raiders are floundering, he’ll probably want to move on. That’s fair.— Bill Williamson (@BWilliamsonNFL) May 17, 2023
Because of his contract, Adams is likely tied to Las Vegas through the 2024 season. So, the Raiders have some time to turn it around. Yet, with this week’s comments, Adams has showed that he has clear expectations of his marriage with this franchise, which is fair.