As the NFL gets closer to free agency, it’s starting to become more clear what the Las Vegas Raiders might do at quarterback. There were many rumblings that the team wanted to go after Tom Brady and then Aaron Rodgers. That might not actually be the case.
General manager Dave Ziegler recently hinted that the team wants a long-term solution at the position. Now head coach Josh McDaniels is echoing that sentiment. He made some comments that would suggest that the Raiders are not going to be looking for a short-term option at quarterback.
“The goal for us, eventually, is to have somebody that’s going to be here for a long time,” McDaniels said during a press conference at the NFL Scouting Combine. “You see the teams that are having success right now in our league, our conference and specifically in our division, they’re young players that were drafted by their clubs and they’re being developed there under the same continuity.
“Do I think you have to do that if you’re not sure or sold on the player and now you’re making a mistake just to try and say that you’re trying to solve a problem? I don’t think that’s really a smart decision. … So we’re going to do everything we can do to evaluate every player at that position, both in the draft and free agency, and try to do what we can do to improve the room. I mean, there’s certainly going to be a number of players added at that position.”
Do McDaniels’ Comments Rule out Rodgers?
Trading for Rodgers would be the opposite of finding a quarterback who is going to be with the team for a long time. The four-time MVP is going to turn 40 during the 2023 season and has talked about retiring in the near future. In fact, it’s still on the table that he retires this offseason and never plays again. The Raiders can’t give up draft picks in a trade just to add a quarterback who might be around for one season.
Nothing can be ruled out, of course. If the Packers aren’t asking for much in a Rodgers trade, then it might be worth trying to capture some magic next season. That doesn’t appear to be what the Raiders want to do. They want to build a sustainable winner and the best way to do that is to build around a young quarterback.
Do This Mean Raiders Are Drafting a Rookie?
The comments from Ziegler and McDaniels certainly suggest the Raiders want a young quarterback. That logic makes sense as the two made the playoffs when Mac Jones was a rookie with the New England Patriots in 2021. However, there’s still a lot that can happen in the coming weeks and months. The Raiders may be leaning toward the idea of drafting a quarterback at No. 7 but that could change if they meet the quarterbacks and aren’t overly impressed with any of them.
Las Vegas appears set to draft a quarterback at some point but it remains to be seen which round they’ll take one. The team could also change its mind if a good veteran option becomes available prior to the draft.