Marcus Mariota Trade Market Cooling

The Raiders have received interest on Marcus Mariota, with multiple teams contacting them about their backup quarterback. But the six-year veteran’s uniquely structured contract has provided an obstacle.

Mariota’s trade market has slowed “significantly,” according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport, who notes teams as of now appear unwilling to send the Raiders draft compensation for Mariota’s contract (video link).

While Mariota’s deal is a two-year, $17.6MM pact on the surface, it would spike substantially if a team used the former No. 2 overall pick as a starter in 2021. Due $10.63MM in 2021 base salary, Mariota could collect over $20MM in total next season if he works as a team’s primary starter. A $12MM salary escalator exists in the former Titans starter’s contract for the ’21 season. Were a team to trade for Mariota, it would likely need to pay him far more than the Raiders would — were they to keep him stationed as Derek Carr‘s backup.

A scenario involving a Mariota release may well surface soon. The Raiders would create $11.35MM in cap space by cutting their QB2. While Carr has (again) been linked to trades, the Raiders are more inclined to ship out Mariota in a deal. But the 27-year-old passer might not fetch much and could wind up back in free agency.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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15 comments on “Marcus Mariota Trade Market Cooling

  1. arty!

    I’m not a contract lawyer or anything, but why would a team write in a $12M escalator if a backup player becomes a starter?

        • dan55

          Mariota had offers to be a starting quarterback last year. The Raiders had to offer him a big contract to get him to agree to the back-up role.

          • arty!

            Didn’t know he had starting offers. That explains the contract language then.

            • Tatsumaki

              He didn’t arty, dan55 is often wrong on most things. He states opinions as facts. If he had a chance to be a starter he would have gladly taken it. Instead took backup money to sit and hope carr stinks.

    • Not a bad idea. I get the feeling that Mariotta might be one of those guys who got written off a little too soon.

  2. bigeasye

    Too bad BOB is not with the Texans. He would’ve traded two firsts for him even with Watson on the roster

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