Ever since Tom Brady was seen with Las Vegas Raiders owner Mark Davis at a UFC event early in the offseason, the rumors began swirling that he would consider playing for the Silver and Black.
While the Raiders weren’t exactly in the market for a quarterback with Derek Carr still under contract, the thought of Brady potentially leaving the New England Patriots and joining the team in Las Vegas seemed to be too much to pass up.
Ultimately though, the Raiders did not make an offer to Brady, and while he did leave the Patriots, it ended up being to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Raiders will move forward with Carr as their quarterback, which seemed like it would be the case all along. According to Vic Tafur of The Athletic though, the Raiders made one last push for Brady and would have shopped Carr on the trade market if the six-time Super Bowl winner chose Las Vegas:
The Raiders were indeed sniffing around Brady as late as this week, according to league sources, and while it is true they never made him an offer, some ballpark numbers were made known to him at some point. The Raiders weren’t going to go as high as the guaranteed $25 million per year for two years that the Bucs gave the 42-year-old quarterback — the game film the last two years just didn’t warrant that in the Raiders’ minds.
But my understanding is that it was more about fit than money for Brady, and the Raiders never got that nod from Brady that they were a serious finalist. If they had, they would have started shopping Carr, who even his critics should agree is a top-16 quarterback with a very friendly pay-as-you-go contract for the next three years.
Based on reports that have come out and what general manager Mike Mayock and head coach Jon Gruden have said this offseason, it is clear they are not completely satisfied with where the organization is at in regards to the quarterback position.
Carr is coming off one of the best seasons of his career though, and that came without a true No. 1 receiver on the roster and a number of injuries to the rest of the receiving corps.
The hope is that he’ll be able to get even better in 2020, his third year under Gruden’s system. The Raiders also recently signed Marcus Mariota to be his backup though, so if Carr struggles then Gruden would likely not hesitate to replace him.