The Las Vegas Raiders have decided to move forward with Jimmy Garoppolo as their starting quarterback but that wasn’t always the plan. Though the quarterback has experience with head coach Josh McDaniels, the team had grander ideas for what they wanted at quarterback. The fact they wanted Tom Brady before he retired wasn’t the best-kept secret in the NFL. Once he was unavailable, the team was considering taking a big swing.
The Raiders hold the No. 7 overall pick in the upcoming draft, which could put them out of the running for one of the top quarterback draft prospects. According to Tashan Reed and Jeff Howe of The Athletic, Las Vegas general manager Dave Ziegler reached out to the Chicago Bears about trading for the No. 1 overall pick in the draft but the asking price was far too steep:
In the ensuing weeks, the Raiders explored trading all the way up to the No. 1 pick, then owned by the Bears, multiple league sources told The Athletic. They never made a formal offer, but they did find out what Chicago’s asking price would be: This year’s first- and second-round picks, two future first-round picks and another future second-round pick.
The Raiders deemed that price too steep, multiple league sources told The Athletic. Chicago dealt the pick to the Panthers last week in return for Carolina’s 2023 first- and second-round picks, 2024 first-round pick, 2025 second-round pick and receiver D.J. Moore, who was essentially substituted in place of a third first-round pick.
Should Raiders Have Made the Deal?
The Carolina Panthers had to give a haul to get the No. 1 pick. They have limited their draft flexibility for the next couple of years and lost a star wide receiver in the process. If USC’s Caleb Williams or North Carolina’s Drake Maye were part of this year’s class, then it would make sense to give up a haul to get one of them. However, this year’s class doesn’t have a clear-cut superstar.
There could be a quarterback or two from the class that ends up having a great career but the Panthers gave up a lot and now don’t have a great wide receiver to pair with a young quarterback. Getting the No. 1 pick would’ve given the Raiders the chance to draft a franchise quarterback but the asking price was far too steep to justify the move.
Could Raiders Still Try to Trade up for QB?
Just because a trade with the Bears didn’t work out, that doesn’t mean the Raiders are completely ruling out trading up in the draft. Garoppolo is a bridge quarterback and his injury history makes it pertinent for the team to find a capable backup. That capable backup could be a rookie.
The Houston Texans are likely going to stay put at No. 2 and draft a quarterback but the Arizona Cardinals could be interested in trading back. They won’t be drafting a quarterback and could take advantage of a team like the Raiders needing one. The asking price to move from No. 7 to No. 3 shouldn’t be too steep. The Indianapolis Colts are almost certainly taking a quarterback at No. 4 so if the Raiders want to ensure they get one of the guys they like, moving up to No. 3 might be necessary.