The Las Vegas Raiders made a major change this week, as long-time starting quarterback Derek Carr will not be playing for the remainder of the season. Instead, the team will be turning the offense over to Jarrett Stidham, who will be making his first career start this weekend against the San Francisco 49ers after being a fourth-round pick of the New England Patriots in 2019. Could Carr end up being traded this offseason, and could the New Orleans Saints be a potential landing spot?
This decision could be driven by money, as Carr’s contract for the next two seasons is guaranteed only for injury. So, to avoid being locked into that, the Raiders are opting to take Carr out of the lineup now that they have officially been eliminated from the postseason.
There is a high likelihood that last week was Carr’s last time suiting up for the Raiders. A trade seems inevitable at this point, especially given how he performed under new head coach Josh McDaniels. Normally, a player wouldn’t lose out in that situation, but given some of the monetary restraints facing the franchise, Las Vegas cannot afford to fire McDaniels, pay him what he is owed and bring in a new head coach.
Expect there to be a lot of rumors about where Carr could end up in the coming weeks. Betting odds have been set and one of the teams near the top of that list is the New Orleans Saints.
The Saints’ odds of being the next team that Carr plays for are set at +400, which is tied with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That would be a nice landing spot for Carr given some of the pieces that are already in place.
He performs his best when he can play off of a strong running game, which the Saints have the capability of having led by Alvin Kamara. There is a burgeoning star to throw the ball to at the wide receiver spot in Chris Olave, giving him a go-to No. 1 option.
The biggest selling point for quarterbacks is the defense. Derek Carr has never had a great defense supporting him, as the Raiders are ranked 32nd in his career and they have never finished above 20th in points allowed. The Saints, on the other hand, are looking at their sixth consecutive finish in the top half of the league in points allowed.
New Orleans also has a gaping hole at the quarterback position heading into the offseason. Andy Dalton is a free agent and the franchise likely doesn’t feel strongly enough about Jameis Winston as a starting option, otherwise, he wouldn’t have permanently lost his job to Dalton this season.