Latest On Raiders’ QB Situation

While the Raiders ended up leaving the draft without a quarterback, the team considered rookie signal-callers up until the buzzer. In fact, the team’s previous offseason moves helped set them up for whatever the draft threw their way.

[RELATED: Raiders To Hold QB Competition Between O’Connell, Minshew]

As Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal writes, the Raiders’ signing of Gardner Minshew was effectively “insurance” in case they couldn’t land one of the draft’s top QB prospects. Considering free agency comes a few months before the draft, the organization added Minshew with the understanding that the veteran could be a seat warmer for a first-round QB or he could be their full-time starter in 2024.

It ended up being the latter. As Bonsignore notes, the Raiders were eager to move up in the draft, but they only had their eyes on the projected top-three picks (Caleb Williams, Jayden Daniels, and Drake Maye). The Bears, Commanders, and Patriots were unwilling to budge, and the Raiders front office believed they’d be reaching for the second-tier of QBs at No. 13.

Of course, the Raiders didn’t even have the opportunity to consider a reach, as Michael Penix Jr., J.J. McCarthy, and Bo Nix all flew off the board before it was the Raiders’ turn to pick. Penix may have been the wildcard in this grouping. While Bonsignore notes that no one knows how the front office would have proceeded if the Washington product was there at No. 13, the Raiders never considered moving up the board to acquire the QB.

So, with the organization opting against a rookie QB, the team will be temporarily handing the reigns to either Minshew or Aidan O’Connell. Minshew’s two-year contract includes $15MM guaranteed on a deal worth $25MM. That value may be a bit high for a backup, but it certainly wouldn’t be enough to stop the Raiders from considering other options. O’Connell had a chance to start at the end of the 2023 campaign, with the former fourth-rounder posting a passer rating of 83.9 while registering a 12:7 touchdown-to-interception ratio.

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