Jimmy Garoppolo contract issue emblematic of Raiders dysfunction

Las Vegas Raiders Introduce Jimmy Garoppolo
Las Vegas Raiders Introduce Jimmy Garoppolo / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
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Raiders front office leaning on Jimmy G in 2023

The Raiders, especially the Dave Ziegler-Josh McDaniels duo, hitched their wagon to Garoppolo in the form of a 3-year, $72 million deal with $33.75 million guaranteed and it’s hard to understand why they would do so to a player that rarely plays a full season. In the 5 full seasons he spent as the starter in San Francisco, Garoppolo only played 15 games or more twice in 2019 and 2021.

In the other 3 years he averaged just 6 games for the 49ers and has ended his season on injured reserve more often than not.

The appeal of Garoppolo for the McZiegler duo is easy to understand because he has 3+ years of experience in the McDaniels system and has been a part of two deep playoff runs for the 49ers. He plays the game with a certain toughness that teams crave and he has the charisma necessary to galvanize a locker room. Regardless of what you think of his ability as a QB which can certainly be debated, the best ability is still availability, and he is sorely lacking in that department.

There is a very real possibility that the Raiders could wind up with a QB room of Brian Hoyer who is no longer a viable starting QB and rookie Aidan O’Connell who looks promising but still needs time to develop and learn the famously complicated McDaniels system. Garoppolo, for all his toughness, could still fail his physical after his offseason surgery despite his best efforts and the Raiders would wind up with egg on their face as usual.

This is the same organization that gave Derek Carr a new contract with a no-trade clause that lead to them losing their former franchise QB for nothing in free agency. Even if many members of Raider Nation don’t think Carr is any good, it’s clear that other NFL teams believe he is a viable starter at the very least and the Raiders could have gotten something in return had they not given him a no-trade clause.