Tom Brady to the Las Vegas Raiders rumors were already picking up steam before UFC 246 in Las Vegas, but owner Mark Davis added a bit of fuel to the fire when he was seen talking to the quarterback at the fight.
While two people talking isn’t necessarily news, the optics of the conversation certainly raised some eyebrows. Former NFL player Pat McAfee dropped some interesting insight on his show:
“Anything [Brady] does is gonna garner conversation. Now, much to the chagrin of Patriots fans, him talking to Mark Davis — and I had some inside sources who were at the fight watching ol’ Conor McGregor beat the hell out of Cowboy Cerrone, but they said those two were talking for like 20 minutes or so. And I’m not sure what the conversation could’ve been about.” McAfee stated.
“Could it have been about a new barber for Mark Davis? Maybe. Could it have been about how the Raiders have operated? Possibly. But I think the much more likely thing is Mark Davis catching a little temperature on what Tom Brady’s feeling, how he’s thinking. And are the Raiders a potential home for him? New city, new franchise, new stadium. Jon Gruden would absolutely love and relish that opportunity. Is Tom Brady the perfect fit for the Raiders? I don’t think so. But I think the Raiders would very much welcome the opportunity to have the GOAT on their team.”
A 20-minute conversation is certainly no quick talk. The Raiders have a lot going on these days, so it’s possible that Brady just wanted to check in on how things are going. It’s likely that it won’t take long to know for sure what Brady is going to do for the 2020 season.
Mark Davis Comments on Tom Brady
There have been many headlines since Davis and Brady chatted, but the Raiders owner has finally addressed the conversation.
“Oh,” Davis said with a wink, per ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez, “that was about Tom was going to fight [Manny] Pacquiao here to open the stadium.”
Obviously, Davis is being facetious there, though it would certainly fill up Allegiant Stadium. What Davis had to say to Brady will probably remain a secret for the rest of time, but the owner’s non-comments are still noteworthy.
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The Decision Likely Won’t Be up to Davis
As much as Davis would like the profits that adding a player like Tom Brady would bring his team, the decision is likely up to Jon Gruden. If the Raiders head coach doesn’t want to give up on Derek Carr for a 42-year old quarterback who many believe is past his prime, Davis is unlikely to interfere with that.
When the Raiders signed Gruden, Davis gave him unprecedented power. While he’s just the coach, Davis isn’t going to do anything he would have a problem with. The team is going to do their due diligence at the quarterback decision and if they feel like there are better options, they’ll likely move on from Carr. However, that seems increasingly unlikely as the offseason goes on.
Also, considering how young the Raiders are as a team, Brady doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for them. If the team is unhappy with Carr, the most logical move seems to be to add a quarterback in the draft and see if he pushes for the starting job.