Ever since it became apparent that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was going to test free agency, the Las Vegas Raiders were quickly rumored as suitors. Most reports that have come out have indicated that the team is ready to make a huge run at trying to acquire the future Hall of Famer. However, NBC Sports’ Tom Curran doesn’t think that will actually be the case:
As for possible suitors? There’s a feeling that – while all the skill-position pieces may be in place in Tampa Bay – laid-back head coach Bruce Arians may be too much of a swing in the opposite direction from “No Days Off!” Belichick. Las Vegas head coach Jon Gruden, I was told, isn’t going to cold-shoulder Brady if the quarterback’s people reach out but the team isn’t planning to give great chase.
What Curran is reporting is very different than what has been reported in the past. ESPN’s Adam Schefter has previously reported that the Raiders were planning to go after Brady and other reputable sources have echoed the same idea. Until a decision is made by Brady, it’s going to be difficult to know what exactly Las Vegas plans to do.
Raiders Appear to Support Derek Carr as the Starter
Despite so many reports coming out to the contrary, the Raiders have done their best to throw support behind Derek Carr without fully endorsing him as the 2020 starter.
“I really think Derek is a heck of a player, and I got a lot of respect for what he has done in what was some tough circumstances,” Jon Gruden said at the Combine. “So I’m not going to answer every media rumor out there, just can’t do it. I’m just going to listen to my serious rock and roll, classic vinyl and keep working. But I love what Derek Carr did, I love what he brings to our team and anxious to continue to build around him.”
That’s pretty strong praise for the quarterback by the coach. It’s clear that the Raiders like Carr quite a bit. However, he isn’t the star that Tom Brady is and it’s fair to question if Carr has hit his ceiling.
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Is It Brady, Carr or Bust for the Raiders?
While Curran’s report certainly throws cold water on the idea that the Raiders will go after Tom Brady, the possibility still exists. The team will at least do their due diligence before they make a final decision. At this point, it seems like either Brady or Carr will be starting for the silver and black in 2020.
Philip Rivers and Jameis Winston have been mentioned in some reports, but it doesn’t seem like the team has much interest in those two. Neither are particularly huge stars and they are both turnover machines. They don’t make sense with Gruden at all. One thing that gives Carr the edge over Brady is that it apparently takes quarterbacks a while to master Gruden’s offense. Heading into year three with Gruden, Carr should have as good of a grasp on the playbook as anybody. While Brady is one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, he’s not a miracle worker. Obviously, the Raiders would work with him to make the adjustment easier, but it remains to be seen if Gruden would want to invest so much into a player who is nearing the end of his career.