Prior to the NFL Draft, Las Vegas Raiders‘ tight end Darren Waller became the subject of trade rumors due to the Green Bay Packers’ interest in him. Those rumors turned out to be smoke as everybody from owner Mark Davis to quarterback Derek Carr disregarded the rumors. The draft has passed and Waller remains a Raider.
However, he will need a new contract in the near future and it remains to be seen how the team will handle that situation. Luckily, Carr decided to sign a team-friendly contract extension recently so that the Raiders could have an easier time signing players like Waller. The tight end was asked about Carr’s decision to take less money so that players like him could sign long-term deals with the team.
“That’s just who Derek is – unselfish, he’s got a great competitive spirit, he just wants to play and have fun and see the guys around him play to the best of their abilities, as well,” Waller told Heavy.com at an April 28 event at Allegiant Stadium hosted by USAA and the NFL. “So that doesn’t surprise me at all. He is a guy who is team-first in everything that he does, that’s who he is as a man whether it’s with his family, community, anything, so grateful to have a guy like that leading us.”
Waller has become one of Carr’s favorite targets in recent years and even previously referred to him as the best tight end in the NFL. There’s no doubt he wants to continue their partnership for a long time.
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Waller Gives Back to Military Members
In recent years, Waller has been a big supporter of the military. His cousin previously served in the military, which gave him a lot of insight into what they go through on a day-to-day basis. The NFL and Allegiant Stadium hosted a special Salute to Service event for Nellis Air Force Base and Creech Air Force Base military members that featured Waller and Raiders defensive end Clelin Ferrell giving a chalk talk in partnership with USAA.
Military members got the chance to ask Waller and Ferrell questions while also getting autographs and photos with the NFL stars.
Waller an Important Piece for the Raiders
It’s no surprise that the Packers had trade interest in Waller. He’s one of the most talented offensive players in the NFL, is a team captain and is active in the community. That’s the exact type of player every team wants. The Raiders have him and there’s no reason to let him go anywhere now. Head coach Josh McDaniels is known to love tight ends and he’s excited to work with Waller.
“I have loved my time around him and I am looking forward to what we’re going to do together,” McDaniels said in response to the trade rumors. “He’s a Raider, he’s going to be a Raider.”
The contract situation could become an issue next offseason but it appears Waller isn’t ready to make noise quite yet as he focuses on the Raiders’ upcoming season.