Las Vegas Raiders Aidan O'Connell had the best Preseason Week 1 of all rookie QBs

The Las Vegas Raiders rookie quarterback played most of the snaps in his NFL debut, and put together the best effort of all 2023 rookie QBs in Week 1.

San Francisco 49ers v Las Vegas Raiders
San Francisco 49ers v Las Vegas Raiders / Michael Owens/GettyImages
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Raiders rookie QB looks like the real deal in his preseason debut

From the outset on Sunday, it was clear that O'Connell had a strong understanding of what Josh McDaniels wanted to do on the offensive side of the ball. With a nice mix of run and pass, the Raiders marched down the field against San Francisco, as Zamir White punched it in from a yard out to give the team a 7-0 lead.

The ten-play drive made an early statement for the Silver and Black, who would also score right before the half to grab a 14-7 halftime lead. To cap off that drive, O'Connell threw a dart to Keelan Cole Sr. on an out-route, displaying incredible velocity and accuracy on the throw to cap off a stellar first half of football in his NFL debut.

O'Connell also showed some elusiveness in the pocket, moving around to keep plays alive before delivering the football down the field. He was cool and calm all game long, showing the Raiders that they may already have a guy who can be their starter if Jimmy Garoppolo has to miss time due to injury this season.

The final stat-line did not tell the whole story, although it was impressive. O'Connell did not look like a rookie on Sunday, something we cannot say about the rest of his draft class, outside of Bennett and Thompson-Robinson this preseason.