Wednesday’s unusual development — Derek Carr leaving the Raiders following the news of his benching — makes it fairly clear the sides are expecting to part ways soon. This opens the door for the first full-fledged search for a new Raiders starter since they selected Carr in Round 2 in 2014, and it moves a proven quarterback to the trade block.
The Raiders backed away from trading Carr in the past, and the 49ers’ Jimmy Garoppolo saga this year shows how presuming a separation can be premature. But it certainly looks like the Raiders plan to move Carr. There will be interested teams, but the acquiring franchise would need to pick up a $40.4MM guarantee and prove appealing enough Carr would waive his no-trade clause. Where will the 31-year-old passer end up?
A few teams will be searching for a quarterback after acquiring one last year, but some parties will be those that sat out the 2022 carousel. The Jets figure to be a Carr suitor. They have seen their 2021 investment — No. 2 overall pick Zach Wilson — bomb during his two-season run as a primary starter. The defense the Jets rebuilt this offseason no longer gives Wilson a lengthy NFL onramp, and the BYU product may not be ready even with the benefit of a long runway. With Wilson perhaps on the way out midway through his rookie deal, the Jets adding Carr’s through-2025 contract would make sense.
We broached this subject upon Wilson’s initial benching last month, and it would put the Jets — who employ ex-49ers OC Mike LaFleur as their play-caller — to an interesting decision. Going after Carr in February would cut off a LaFleur-Garoppolo reunion in March. While Garoppolo’s checkered health history may now place him behind Carr in teams’ hierarchies, the former has extensive familiarity with LaFleur.
Carr, 31, becoming available also complicates the Giants’ path. They have seen a solid season from Daniel Jones, with the Dave Gettleman-era investment working with a bottom-tier receiving corps to lead the team to the playoff precipice. With a more proven option available, would the Joe Schoen–Brian Daboll duo preemptively nix Jones negotiations by trading for Carr? If Jones leads the Giants to the playoffs, the prospect of seeing him with better receivers in 2023 — though, at a much higher price — would seemingly be interesting, and he is six years younger than Carr.
Tom Brady–Raiders rumors may be relentless over the next several weeks, provided the legendary passer does not actually retire this time around. The current expectation, barring retirement, is for Brady to leave the Buccaneers to finish his career. This would open a spot for a veteran quarterback to pair with a Super Bowl nucleus, albeit one that has, particularly on offense, underwhelmed to an alarming degree this season. The Bucs were in the quarterback market during Brady’s first retirement, but timing also may rule them out of the Carr sweepstakes. A Carr move in February — a month before Brady’s free agency — would lead arguably the greatest quarterback ever out of town. That would be quite the strange ending to this memorable Bucs chapter.
If Carson Wentz‘s comeback does not produce a Commanders playoff berth, he could well be on the move for a third straight offseason. Washington can cut bait free of charge. This franchise has searched for QB continuity ever since the Kirk Cousins franchise tag years, having entered six straight seasons with a new starter. Carr, who has missed two regular-season games due to injury in his career, would provide that.
He would also cost more than Wentz, who remains attached to a $32MM-per-year Eagles extension he inked in 2019. Wentz is tied to just $20MM and $21MM base salaries over the next two years. Carr’s deal includes future bases of $32.9MM (guaranteed in a trade), $41.9MM ($7.5MM of which would be guaranteed) and $41.2MM. The Commanders employ Jack Del Rio, who coached Carr for three seasons, as defensive coordinator.
The Saints traded their 2023 first-round pick to the Eagles and ditched their original 2022 QB plan early this season. Benching Jameis Winston for Andy Dalton has not moved the needle in terms of wins, though Pro Football Focus surprisingly rates Dalton as a top-five QB this season. Dalton’s deal expires at season’s end. New Orleans, per usual, resides 32nd in terms of projected 2023 cap space. The Saints sit $53.9MM over the projected 2023 salary ceiling, per OverTheCap. While Mickey Loomis has gotten out of worse predicaments, adding Carr’s contract would be a new challenge for the seasoned GM. The Saints employ Carr’s first NFL HC (Dennis Allen), though he was only with Oakland for a few Carr games before being fired.
Carolina has attempted bigger swings at QB over the past two offseasons, offering a first-round pick and change for Matthew Stafford and offering three and change for Deshaun Watson. The Panthers are preparing to chase a QB again. Is re-signing Sam Darnold a viable option, or will David Tepper try and make a notable upgrade. Carr might not qualify as a huge splash, but he would likely provide an upgrade for a team that has intriguing pieces at several positions.
Neither of the teams that made the Matt Ryan trade have surefire answers for 2023, though Carr might not be a true fit for either the Colts or Falcons. Indianapolis is barreling toward securing its first top-five pick since the Peyton Manning injury year produced Andrew Luck. After trying veterans repeatedly, Indianapolis could have a chance to land an impact prospect. Desmond Ridder being an unchallenged starter would be a risk for the Falcons next year, but they still are on the rebuilding track. That said, Arthur Smith is going into Year 3. Carr pairing with Kyle Pitts and Drake London would be interesting.
Vote in PFR’s latest poll and weigh in with your thoughts on this developing situation in the comments section.
82 comments on “Poll: Which Team Will Add Derek Carr In 2023?”
This is so Colts.
Not old enough
The Houston Texans. His brother started his career there. He will finish his career there. The Colts don’t have the cap space. Nor the draft pics to give up for him. The Titans don’t have the cap space. The Jets need more than just a QB
You say the Jets need more than a QB after suggesting the $%&#ing Texans? The Jets would be a playoff team with a decent QB right now. They need help on the O-line and could use some talent in the linebacker and safety group, but a tackle and a solid QB gets them contending, even if not at the highest level.
The Texans aren’t close to a Derek Carr away from competing. They should be drafting a Bryce Young, ideally landing a #1 receiver, and throwing as much talent at the defense as they can.
With a no-trade contract there’s no way he wants Houston or the Irsay circus. Something about Washington feels right to me. They have a lot of good pieces and aren’t that far away with a solid QB.. and Snyder the spider stays out of it.
He’s an Angels fan. He knows about bad signings
Jets are a SB contending team with Carr
I can’t imagine the Texans passing up on Bryce Young for a vet already on a big contract
The Colts have 29.3 million in cap space and when they release Matt Ryan, they will have 46.5 million in cap space. They have more than enough room for Carr.
Washington would make a lot of sense. They need a QB who’s already good while that defense and receiving group are still intact and while the coaches still have their jobs. I think the Jets would prefer a veteran QB to another rookie, but I think Washington requires one.
Is Carr that much better than Heinicke, considering that Carr likely will have double the cap hit.
No, not really. Carr sometimes shows up, sometimes doesn’t. Somehow Carr doesn’t have chemistry with the rest of the team to inspire and lead them. Carr is really a less annoying version of Cousins, slightly less physically gifted (Cousins has a very accurate and fast long ball). Mediocre QB’s for whom it’s not worth trading but if you have them in your system it’s hard to get rid of them, as there is a seventy per cent chance any replacement would be worse.
I think you can expect Carr to be in the 10-15 range of all QBs in the NFL. I don’t think Heinicke is actually a starting caliber QB. He’s plucky and fun to watch, and his best moments are exciting, but he’s a backup. That’s a major difference. If you judge Carr compared to the best QBs in football or like you’re expecting him to be the reason your team is good, he’ll disappoint. But if a team has lots of other strengths and simply needs a good QB, he fits the bill.
It’s not worth trading draft picks for QB 14 in the league. The Redskins gambled on Wentz recently, but the gamble was more interesting as Wentz had had an MVP level season. There was a potential upside. There’s no real upside to Carr. He’ll always be a competent but uninspiring quarterback.
After wandering in circles and dealing with the no-trade clause, I’ll bet the Raiders keep Carr until the end of this contract and then pick up their third round compensatory pick, when he leaves in free agency.
The Commanders gambled on Wentz, and Wentz is a lot worse than Carr. That MVP season was an outlier and it was a while ago. Wentz is now a very similar player to Heinicke. Carr doesn’t panic and collapse under pressure like Wentz, he’s a lot more accurate, and he isn’t as afraid of taking shots. And again, it’s not about upside, it’s about floor. With a higher floor QB, teams like the Jets and Commanders would comfortably be in the playoffs this season.
And after this, it sure looks like Carr is done as a Raider.
Carr and Wentz are almost interchangeable. Last year when Wentz was still in Indianapolis, Carr went 10-7, Wentz went 9-8. QB rating: Carr 94, Wentz 95.6. QBR: Carr 52.4, Wentz 54.7.
Neither of these quarterbacks with their current level of play look like QB’s who will take their team to a Super Bowl. If I had to choose, I’d choose neither. If I had to choose one, I would choose Carr as the more consistent – if average – quarterback.
If as a GM I could have 2022 Derek Carr on a rookie deal, I’d be excited. The savings on veteran QB salary would allow me to add a couple more top tier linemen, contributing in a virtuous cycle to better quarterback play.
Carr is not on a rookie deal. Carr costs $43 million/year. No thank you. Wentz is at least just $28 million year, leaving me room for one of those linemen or an excellent WR2 (top tier WR1 are in the $20 million category now as we all know). If a joint package of Carr + Adams were available for $50 million, that would be interesting. Besides the draft pick, Carr + Adams count for apprx. $50 million against the salary cap for 2023 but that jumps to $68 million against the salary cap for 2024, which in turn jumps to $88 million for 2025.
Good luck building a team with that kind of money locked into two players, one a superstar, the other a slightly above average QB. Adams turns thirty-one next year so it would be fair to wonder if his extraordinary productivity will continue at the same pace.
Ok, except you have to choose from options that exist. The Raiders are not built to win, agreed. But a team like the Commanders (yes, that’s their name, whether you like it or not) or the Jets could win right now with a merely solid QB, and a rookie QB is not only a dice roll, but also a delayed timeline for a team that has a win-now core they might not be able to keep together. Carr isn’t anyone’s dream, but he’s a lot better than either team has. Yes, he’s a lot better than Wentz. QBR is a junk stat. Wentz has become a disaster under pressure, and his stats superficially look better than they should because coordinators keep him on such short leashes. There’s a reason he’s been traded, traded, and benched in consecutive seasons.
@Alec Kinnear: lmao, no. Wentz is one of the worst starting QBs in the league. He is definitely not ‘interchangeable’ with Carr. Carr, while maybe just a notch above mediocre, is so much better than Wentz at this point it’s not even funny. Wentz is horrible and might be done in this league. Carr will have suitors this offseason, Wentz won’t.
I’m giving you the 2021 season results side by side for Wentz and Carr. They were interchangeable. Wentz did not do well in DC and is worse now. Going into the 2022 season, there was not much to choose between them.
The point is not that Wentz is good, the point is that giving up draft capital and taking a big chunk out of salary cap for either of them is a big mistake.
If a team already has a QB like 2022 Carr on their roster (Raiders), it’s hard to cut bait as the chances are good that the team will go into QB hell. On the other hand, spending draft picks and salary cap on Wentz or Carr, as the Redskins proved last year, is almost certain to make your team worse.
Even the Rams, who did get their Super Bowl, will be paying for that Stafford trade (large draft capital and stack of money) with four or five years of struggle. Trading for a QB only works if either the draft compensation is small or the QB is young. The Vikings did okay picking up Kirk Cousins as he didn’t cost them any draft capital and he was still young at the time. Even then, the salary cap which he’s demanded from his position of free agency has tied the Vikings hands, while Cousins play has only this year threatened to give the Vikings a season to remember.
Not really better than Heinecke? As an ODU alum, I love Heinecke, but he’s a bridge or high-end backup. Carr is an average starting QB who can help a solid roster to the playoffs. Carr is unquestionably better. He is also better than Wentz, and QBR and rating are just two hand-picked metrics to prove your point despite the overwhelming evidence and the rest of the data that suggests Carr is much better.
@myaccount2 The goal as far as I’ve heard is not to make it to the playoffs (the Redskins did that with Heinicke already) but to make a deep run. Carr is unlikely to help with more than a wild card game.
If you already have Carr, yes, dumping him would be a painful and probably wrong decision. On the other hand, acquiring a QB like Carr As this season the Broncos found out by picking up an ageing Russell Wilson, the Falcons have found out by picking up an ageing Matt Ryan, the Redskins found out by picking up a fragile and fading Carson Wentz.
Trading for Derek Carr is almost as silly as any of those awful trades above. The Ryan was probably the least harmful as he only cost a third round draft pick and his 2018 contract was not extended (reasonable annual $27 million cap over two seasons).
But if you’re a competing team, trading for Carr is a better option than drafting a complete roll-of-the-dice QB like Levis or Richardson who probably end up not panning out.
You really have no idea if he’s a QB who can’t get past the Wild Card round. Stafford had that same reputation until he got dealt to a team with talent then won a Super Bowl, and the Raiders were about as successful as that Lions era in assembling a talented roster around the QBs, so maybe Carr shows his true capability with a talented group. With a top 5 defense like the Jets–who can keep scores low–and explosive weapons (Hall, G. Wilson) and quality secondary options (C. Davis, Conklin, Knight, Moore), Carr has the opportunity to go further. He’s clearly better than either of Zach Wilson or Mike White and White has done a pretty good job of keeping scores close against good teams like Minnesota and Buffalo. A QB like Carr could potentially get them over that hump and win a couple extra close ballgames.
Hasn’t Carr stated that he would retire before playing for a different team? Or, am I thinking of someone else?
I can think of a few players that have said that but changed their mind once they saw the green they were being offered. Terrell Suggs vowed to retire a Raven but a month later was with the Cardinals is one example.
He did say that, multiple times. The Raiders have countered that sentiment.
I’m sure a lot of players say it (even more think it or wish it to be true), but when the reality hits that the franchise doesn’t want you around and you feel like playing a few/several more years, I wouldn’t hold it against them for backing down from such a statement.
It’s less annoying than guys who say “I’ll take less to stay [here]” then sign with the highest bidder for $5 more than [here] offered. Or guys who retire for 2 weeks at some point in the off-season, but change their mind because they don’t want to miss the guys during OTA’s…that they don’t attend anyway.
I think the Jets really want Aaron Rodgers . A real championship QB
As a Jets fan, aside from PTSD from the last time they acquired a Packer legend, I worry about spending that much draft capital to pay that much money to a QB that old, especially one who’s threatened retirement and whose behavior has become more concerning.
Rodgers is washed up and old. Plus if you thought the Jets had accountability issues with Zach, do you really think they want the league’s least accountable quarterback?
Wilson was unaccountable for being horrendous and letting down the whole rest of the team. Rodgers hasn’t had that problem.
What? That’s like Aaron’s whole personality.
Rodgers is happy to pass blame, but he’s also a great QB who has often carried his team to victory. That’s not nearly as bad as a completely inept QB being THE reason his team loses on a regular basis and never showing any accountability or awareness, even when everyone watching TV can see how much he’s letting his teammates down.
I don’t know where he’s going, but wherever it is, that’s the team I’m rooting for next year. I’m honestly hoping anywhere but the Colts though so it’s not just going from one dumpster fire to another.
I suppose it’s a good thing your team loyalty isn’t based on where Josh Johnson is playing…lol.
The market can’t sustain unsuccessful $40 million QBs.
I think that’s a valid point but if a QB on a rookie contract puts up Mahomes like numbers, what option is there but to grant him a market setting extension with huge guarantees? Any GM who lets a player like that walk will lose his job.
Is there any examples of a QB putting up Mahomes type numbers throughout their rookie contract then turning mediocre in year 6?
Even though the rules provide some protection for QBs they are not immune to injuries. That’s the boogie man all GMs fear when they commit to these expensive long term contracts.
Everyone forgets that Carr has a no trade clause, so he gets to decide where he goes, if anywhere.
Out of all of the teams that need a QB, I’d say the Giants or Jets are appealing as well as the Saints if Payton comes back.
The Jets’ priority is upgrading OL and adding depth to defense. The Giants’ priority is keeping Saquon Barkley and Darius Slayton.
You really don’t think QB is priority number one for the Jets?
Also, why would retaining Slayton be such a pressing need for the Giants?
You haven’t seen much of the Jets this term. Offensive tackles keep going down and the secondary is rather thin.
As to the Giants, Slayton is a good WR who was buried by Joe Judge and has had a second wind under Brian Daboll.
The Giants priority is keeping Darius Slayton? Am I reading that right? Slayton is a complete afterthought with Schoen and Daboll. He was the preseason #4 WR and through the first half of the season, they had Richie James ahead of him. The only reason Daboll is playing him is out of necessity.
South Central Louisiana State University Mud Dogs
The semi-pro team in Lafayette? LOL
Bobby can you do this for me every play?
The Commanders should trade for both Carr and Adams.
The Redskins already have Dotson and McLaurin and Samuel and Gibson (and some third choices as well). Adams would be a nice add of course, but with the salary cap there’s no money for an established star on offense. The QB money is already there but no extra.
If you’re so up to date, you should probably know what the team is called.
Good one Oooof, yeah.
This football team will always be the Washington Redskins unless they move to another city.
Um, no sorry the name of the team is Commanders. You can choose to live in reality and root for your team like a regular person or you can choose to live in la-la land/fantasy land & be remembered as that guy who couldn’t let go of a measely name change. It’s a sad, strange hill to die on sir; I would seriously re-think your priorities in life.
And you can choose to bully people on the internet or get a life.
Redskins. That’s what I signed up for decades ago and that’s what the Redskins will stay for most of their fans.
Didn’t we see this movie when McDaniels was in Denver when he traded Cutler? Not saying Cutler was great, but same story, different team. Just like Belichick, McDaniels is crap without Brady. Davis was a moron for hiring and even bigger one for letting him ruin the team. He should follow Denver’s lead this year and make him one and done.
I think he’ll retire, just like Jake Plummer. He’s a west coast guy, played at Fresno, that lives in Vegas now. I just don’t see him going to any of those teams listed. If he does though, I’d guess a run heavy team, built for the playoffs. The Titans would make the most sense.
He has many, many millions of reasons to continue his career.
Jets or Colts.
With Carr having a no trade I doubt he goes CAR.
Ultimately I think it comes down to acquisition cost. If the price is two 1s I can see the colts doing that more than the jets since Ballard will probably be under immense pressure from Irsay.
He’s more likely to be cut than cost two 1s. The price won’t be that high.
That no trade clause will limit Carr’s get, but he’s fortunate enough to have a handful of interested teams to give his market a small boost (unlike, say, Mayfield, who had only one team as an option). Now, given how tight the NFL is, I’m certain that these teams will narrow down behind the scenes who the real contenders actually are, but having more than a single team interested will help recoup that price slightly after the no trade clause took a chunk out of it.
Conditional 3rd and maybe a 4th or another 3rd. So 2 picks.
3rd becomes a 2nd if the team makes it to champ game
3rd becomes a 1st if team wins superbowl
Raiders need 2023 draft picks. Time is not on their side.
I wouldn’t be shocked to see a first, but I think a second due to Carr’s salary is more likely. Even with the $40 million or so, a third would be sad get for a franchise starter who isn’t that old.
The correct question is which team will add Carr AND Adams next year.
Carr is a really good QB. Not great, but really good. He belongs on a good team with weapons around him. Three teams come to mind immediately, and that is the New Orleans Saints, the Pittsburgh Steelers, and a bold move to the Miami Dolphins. Save Tua’s life.
I also wonder as a Broncos fan if the Raiders would do an inter-division trade for Russell Wilson? Ciara could have residency in Vegas and Russell Wilson would have the glitz and glam he so desperately wants.
So the Steelers are going to give up on the kid they’ve basically said is their future for a washed up QB. Yeah. Ok
Washed up QB? Hahaha. Do you watch or know anything about football?! In a win-now league, the Steelers would absolutely trade Pickett for Carr.
I forgot to add that Carr is 13th in the NFL in QBR this season. In a down year with God awful coaching and play calling. Yeah, half of the NFL Teams would rather have Carr than who they currently have.
You’re right. “Washed up” was a poor choice of words. Despite his game here in Pittsburgh, I like Carr and his potential to turn a team around
You’re wrong about the Steelers trading for him. In fact, it’s hilarious. Do you watch or know anything about the Steelers?
If win now was the objective, Pickett would have had a clipboard attached to his wrist and told to watch and learn
“Absolutely trade Pickett for Carr?”
I guess the Raiders FO thought they could increase Carr’s trade value by benching him in the final two games?
The PC phrase is “protect against injury” that would prevent a trade completely. While there’s some logic to the idea, it’s really not the reason they’re doing it. McLittleHoodie doesn’t like him, it seems they don’t mesh well in terms of what McJoshie wants and what Carr wants or can do, so McFailureCoach and Mark Bowlis think they can do better despite angering Adams and, according to Adams, not really pleasing anyone else in the locker room either.
Cleveland because it’s Cleveland.
Carr is too emotionally soft for New York fans & media. I think Tampa Bay is the best place for him to have offensive targets, along with the fans and media are more laid back.
Too emotionally soft? I seem to recall New York fans & media falling in love with a QB who wore pantyhose.
Carr should force the Raiders to cut him. They took a dump on him, he should treat them the same.
Derek may just ditch football altogether.
Rumor is he has a solid offer to star in an updated version of a classic television program,
“My Mother the CARR” !!
His old QB coach is the OC in Tennessee. My guess is the Raiders get Brady and Carr is traded to the Titans.
He won’t go anywhere that doesn’t have a strong receiving corp. Most of the top teams that fit that bill already have their QB except for the Raiders. So now what does he do? He might have to wait until a team promises him that they will draft a top WR or upgrade their WRs through FA. Hard to leave the Raiders, he seems to have had it all there. Maybe he ends up there after all is said and done.