The Oakland Raiders Officially Made Matt Schaub Their Quarterback
Sep 15, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub (8) celebrates throwing the winning touchdown during overtime against the Tennessee Titans at Reliant Stadium. The Texans won 30-24. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports
Well Raider Nation, its official, Matt Schaub is the quarterback of the Oakland Raiders. I saw a lot more praise for the move than criticism, but I think Raider Nation understands that we needed a quarterback that can help us to compete within our division. There were other options out there, but GM Reggie McKenzie got his guy. Now that the shock factor is slowly setting in, lets take a look at some figures.
Actually, it was suggested by my brother-from-another-mother that the Raiders should have waited for Schaub to go on the open market before scooping him up. I saw some Twitter feedback that suggested the same thought process. I wondered that myself, but I was quickly reminded of a quarterbacks salary by Gil Brandt on Late Hits (NFL Radio, Sirius-XM 88). He stated that the league average for a starting quarterback is a little more than $12,000,000. The Raiders are paying $10,000,000 for Schaub. Some would say that is a steep price for a quarterback who had a floundering year in 2013. Yet, if you look at the salary numbers as a whole and compare them to Philip Rivers, Ben Roethlisberger, or Jay Cutler, you’ll find that the Raiders got Schaub at a very good price.
Here are some numbers for you; Philip Rivers is slotted to make $13,800,000, Ben Roethlisberger will make $12,100,000, and Jay Cutler will make $22,500,000. When Schaub was throwing over 3,000 yards per season from 2009-2012, one could honestly say that he matched up comparatively with these three quarterbacks. Still, the Raiders only have to pay $10,000,000 and the Houston Texans still have to pay ALL of his guaranteed money ($17,500,000). Basically the Texans will eat that money and take a huge cap hit in 2015. The option to restructure or renegotiate his contract is always available. Remember, this is Reggie “I horde the money” McKenzie we’re talking about. It will all come down to performance in 2014.
Dec 29, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub (8) passes against the Tennessee Titans during the first half at LP Field. Mandatory Credit: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports
Have no fear Raider Nation, I think this was one of the smarter moves in the off-season for the Raiders. Now, this opens up the pick option in the 1st round for the Raiders. Instead of thinking about grabbing a rookie quarterback with the 5th pick in the 1st round, the Raiders can focus their attention elsewhere. Possibly a Defensive Tackle (Aaron Donald/Rashede Hageman/DaQuan Jones) or a Linebacker (Khalil Mack/Anthony Barr). Either way, I like the position the Raiders have put themselves in.
This would also allow the Raiders to possibly utilize their 2nd round pick to obtain an additional 1st round pick by trading up. Granted, it may cost the Raiders a 1st rounder in the 2015 NFL Draft, but if the player is worth it then go get it. So many options and decisions to be made by the Raiders Staff. The good thing is, this draft is stacked with depth at every position.
The Raiders have their starting quarterback in Matt Schaub now, and he has a plethora of receivers already on the Oakland roster. Between James Jones, Rod Streater, Andre Holmes, Brice Butler, Denarius Moore, and even Juron Criner, someone will emerge as his go-to guy. Much like Andre Johnson was for Schaub in Houston.
Nov 17, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Oakland Raiders tight end Mychal Rivera (81) celebrates after scoring on a 26-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium. The Raiders defeated the Texans 28-23. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
One of Schaub’s favorite outlet receivers in Houston was Owen Daniels. Schaub will have Marcel Reece and Mychal Rivera as his outlets now, and this should make for some exciting games. The more I think about this acquisition, the more I like it. Schaub will make the receivers in Oakland better, and that is something Raider Nation has been waiting to see since Tim Brown was on the field. Can’t wait for August and September to get here. I’ll do my best to wait it out, but I am really looking forward to this year. This will be the turn around year. Yes, mark my words, the Raiders will turn it around this year.