NFC Team’s Trade Offer for Raiders’ $51 Million Star Revealed: Report

dave ziegler

Getty Las Vegas Raiders general manager Dave Ziegler.

With the season off to a rough start, the Las Vegas Raiders were surprisingly quiet at the deadline. They didn’t make a move to try and improve the roster and they didn’t sell off assets in an attempt to salvage the future. Following the Week 9 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the team may regret not being sellers.

Darren Waller was supposed to be one of the keys to the offense this season but he has missed the last three games with a hamstring injury and only had 16 catches in the five games he did play. The Raiders handed him a three-year contract extension worth $51 million in the offseason, which keeps him under team control for five years. Despite the team not showing interest in trading the former Pro Bowler yet, that didn’t stop one NFC team from trying.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Green Bay Packers aggressively tried to trade for Waller at the deadline.

It appears that the offer wasn’t aggressive enough as the Raiders didn’t seem to strongly consider making the deal. Vic Tafur of The Athletic is reporting that the Packers were willing to part with a second-round pick for Waller:

The Packers, according to a person with knowledge of the discussions, tried to deal a second-round pick for tight end Darren Waller at the trade deadline last week, and the Raiders passed. Waller hasn’t played in a month. Why would a 2-5 team (then) that is admittedly half-looking to the future not make that trade?

Maybe because the new regime now thinks it needs to win some games this season to secure the coach a second season.

Is Waller Worth More Than a 2nd Round Pick?

With the willingness to give up a second-round pick for Waller, the Packers were willing to take a risk. The tight end missed six games last year and hasn’t played in a month. That said, he’s proven in the past to be a top-three tight end. A fully healthy Waller playing his best football is worth more than a second-round pick. He’s a matchup nightmare and one of the best-receiving weapons in the NFL.

In his current state, a second-round pick was a reasonable offer but the Raiders clearly aren’t ready to move on. They’ve yet to really play with their fully loaded offense this season. If Waller comes back healthy, perhaps the offense finally starts to click. If the Jaguars game happened before the deadline, there’s a stronger chance that Waller isn’t a Raider right now.

Can Raiders Salvage the Season?

The Raiders aren’t mathematically out of the playoff race yet but it sure seems like the season is essentially over. The team would likely need to win at least eight of their next nine games to have a shot at the playoffs. With how they’ve been playing, that’s highly unlikely.

Despite the odds being against them, the Raiders can’t give up on the season yet. A 7-10 or 8-9 season likely saves quarterback Derek Carr and the coaching staff. A 3-14 season could lead to some sweeping changes in the offseason. A lot of people could be playing for their jobs and need the Raiders to win some games.

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