Ever since the Antonio Brown saga, Raiders general manager Mike Mayock has stayed relatively quiet outside of a November interview with Rich Eisen. This has led to some in the media questioning why he’s been absent. Mayock decided to finally break his silence and spoke with a team representative on Upon Further Review. While he still hasn’t spoken to independent media, he did drop some interesting tidbits in his latest interview.
One of the most interesting things Mayock got to touch on was the Raiders’ move to Las Vegas and how that would affect free agency.
“I think first and foremost, we go from a 13% state tax in California to a zero percent state tax in Nevada,” Mayock said. “The players and their agents are very aware of that.”
That gives the Raiders a rare advantage as Florida, Texas, Tennesee and Washington are the only other states with no income tax that have NFL teams. Couple that with the bright lights of the Las Vegas Strip and free agents could be flocking to the Raiders.
Mayock Talks About Derek Carr’s Season
One of the biggest talking points heading into the Raiders’ offseason is whether or not the team will decide to stick with Derek Carr for another season. He showed a lot of improvement in 2019 compared to 2018, but he still struggled at time. Some reports suggest that Carr is on his way out, but Mayock had some very strong praise for the quarterback:
As far as Derek is concerned… Jon demands a lot from his quarterbacks. People don’t understand how much. Just from a verbiage standpoint all the way to control, pre-snap at the line of scrimmage, you know, his percentage of completions, his ability to command the huddle, his ability to command the pre-snap process at the line of scrimmage, his accuracy. He’s got arm talent. You look at his development between him and Darren Waller, you know, Darren Waller had 90 catches for over a thousand yards. Darren Waller is a Pro Bowl tight end by any definition. And then the chemistry he developed with Hunter Renfrow. I think we’ve got a good offensive line and what we have to do is a better job of supporting him with some more wide receiver talent, the ability to catch the football, the ability to spread the ball around a little bit. You know, Derek handled everything Jon threw at him mentally. I thought he progressed at a rapid rate in year two in Jon’s system.
Those comments from Mayock don’t really sound like a general manager who’s preparing to make a change at quarterback. Now, it could be that he’s trying to sing Carr’s praise so that he could keep his value high in case the team decides to trade him. Regardless, it seems likely that the Raiders hold onto Carr for at least one season. Though, don’t be surprised if the team adds another quarterback for competition.
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Mayock Explains Why We Haven’t Heard Much From Him
Like previously mentioned, Mayock hasn’t made himself available very much since the Antonio Brown situation. He gave a vague explanation as to why:
I try to, kind of, stay out of the way publicly because I believe that the regular season is about the coaches and the players. And I feel like my job is to support the coaching staff to whatever I, extent we can with injuries, free agents, getting guys off the streets, guys that can help, and, and that’s tough because Jon and the coaching staff are working their asses off every week trying to get ready with game plan.
Now, it makes sense why Mayock wouldn’t want to talk much during the regular season. He’s not required to, so there’s no reason to. However, it is peculiar that he has yet to speak to independent media this offseason. That’s not to say that anything is wrong or that he’s planning an exit, it just seems like he would’ve had more to say. Some in the media are reading a little too much into his silence, but it should be a situation to monitor. He’s going to have to speak to the media eventually, especially if the team signs any big free agents. If he remains absent at any of those press conferences, then it’s time for concern.