Oakland Raiders Rumors & News

Backloaded Deal For Raiders’ Derek Carr?

Derek Carr and the Raiders have a new deal which will keep the quarterback in place through the 2022 season. We know that the new money average on the deal – $25MM per year – is an all-time record, but there are other factors which will dictate the true value of the deal. Naturally, the cash flow and nature of the guarantees will tell us a lot about how Carr did in negotiations, but his reps may have also structured his deal with the Nevada state tax code in mind, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweetsDerek Carr/Khalil Mack (vertical)

[RELATED: Raiders, Derek Carr Agree To Record-Breaking Deal]

California’s state tax rate is 13.3%. Meanwhile, there is no state tax in Nevada. A backloaded deal could make a lot of sense for Carr and allow him to hang on to millions more in income.

We know that the Raiders plan to play their home games in Oakland for the 2017 and 2018 seasons. In 2019, the team could move to a temporary home in Nevada while waiting for it’s new home to be built, but it’s also possible that they’ll extend their stay in Oakland for one more year. It stands to reason that Carr’s team has opted for less money in the first two years of the new deal (’18, ’19) with a step up in 2020, when the new stadium is projected to open.

It’s not just Carr that will be thinking of the Battle Born State when negotiating a new contract with the Raiders. The same will go for any Raider in extension talks, including Khalil Mack, Gabe Jackson, and Amari Cooper, Schefter tweets.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Raiders Sign Derek Carr To Extension

The Raiders and Derek Carr have finalized a new five-year deal that is believed to be worth about $25MM per year, league sources tell Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Carr confirmed the deal on Twitter on Thursday morning and a formal announcement from the Raiders could be right around the corner."<strong

[RELATED: Lions Willing To Make Matthew Stafford League’s Highest-Paid Player]

Carr is now signed through 2022 with a deal that will contain just south of $69MM over the first three years, according to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (Twitter links). Carr’s deal includes $70MM in guarantees with $40MM fully guaranteed at signing, a source tells Tom Pelissero of USA Today (on Twitter).

It has long been expected that Carr’s deal could approach the $25MM/year mark, but it wasn’t clear when the two sides would finally shake hands on a deal. Now, the Raiders have gotten the extension hammered out with weeks to go before training camp. That’s a huge win for the Raiders, especially since Carr was adamant about cutting off talks in late July.

“I wouldn’t even answer my phone,” Carr said recently. “The money isn’t the thing that drives me. … What drives me is making sure I’m giving everything that I have with my abilities, and making sure that we win. And I don’t want anything distracting my thought process at all…Now, that’s not a jab, or anything like that. That’s just me saying I’m not going to deal with anything that’s not helping me just focus on winning.”

The former second-round pick was slated to enter the final year of his rookie contract. Instead, he’ll see a titanic bump after his paltry $1.15MM salary in 2017. Before today’s news, Andrew Luck‘s $24.6MM average annual salary was the highest of any player in the NFL. Carr’s new deal will place him at the top in AAV, besting Carson Palmer ($24.35MM), Drew Brees ($24.25MM), and Kirk Cousins ($23.9MM).

Last season, Carr completed 63.8% of his passes for 3,937 yards, 28 touchdowns, and six interceptions. He graded out as Pro Football Focus’ No. 6 QB last season, putting him ahead of Brees, Cousins, Matthew Stafford, Dak Prescott, and several other major names. Only Tom Brady, Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers, Luck, and Russell Wilson finished with higher scores than the Raiders QB.

Carr’s new deal will have major implications for Stafford and Cousins as they seek new multi-year arrangements. Lions president Ron Wood admitted this week that a new deal for Stafford would likely mean making him the league’s highest-paid player and the Carr deal only raises the bar. The two sides may now have the framework in place for a deal and that could bump Carr from the top spot in compensation rather quickly.

Meanwhile, Cousins and the Redskins have until July 17 (not July 15) to work out an extension. Cousins is not interested in taking a hometown discount and he is seeking full guarantees that will match the total of this year’s franchise tag ($23.94MM) plus next year’s transition tender ($28.7MM).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Sebastian Janikowski Plans To Kick Into His 40s

  • Like Rivers, Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski would like to continue his career into the foreseeable future. One key difference between the two is that Janikowski is already on the cusp of his 40s. Nevertheless, the 39-year-old’s aiming to remain the Raiders’ kicker when they relocate to Las Vegas in 2020. “I hope so, that’s my goal,” he said, via the Associated Press. “That’s not my decision.” Janikowski will be 42 when the Raiders move, which isn’t an unprecedented age for a kicker to play at (the Colts’ Adam Vinatieri is 44, and ex-Raider George Blanda lasted until he was 48, notes the AP), but it would make for a remarkable run with one franchise. Janikowski is entering his 18th year with the Raiders, who raised eyebrows when the then-Al Davis-led organization chose him 17th overall in the 2000 draft. The ex-Florida State Seminole has generally been effective for the Raiders since, including when he made 29 of 35 field goals last year.
  • One of Janikowski’s Raiders teammates, quarterback Derek Carr, is a candidate to receive a record contract worth $25MM-plus per year prior to the season. But Bill Barnwell of ESPN.com is somewhat skeptical of Carr and the Raiders, arguing that it will be tough for either to replicate their 2016 performances this year. Carr will have difficulty avoiding negative regression on both his paltry interception rate (1.1 percent) and lofty fourth-quarter comeback total (seven) from last season, while the Raiders probably won’t win 12 games again unless they dramatically improve their point differential, Barnwell contends. Oakland only outscored its opposition by 31 points last season, leading to a Pythagorean Expectation of 8.7 wins. Additionally, the club went a hard-to-sustain 8-1 in games decided by seven or fewer points.

Derek Carr Could Get $25MM Per Year

Raiders quarterback Derek Carr won’t negotiate a contract extension once training camp starts, but that could end up being a moot point. The Raiders and Carr have been engaging in “good faith” negotiations in an effort to get a deal done by the camp deadline, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). If the two sides do reach an agreement, it’s “very possible” Carr will set a new benchmark and become the NFL’s first $25MM-per-year player, according to Rapoport.

Derek Carr

Both the league’s ever-rising salary cap and Carr’s performance since entering the pros as a second-round pick in 2014 have him poised to land elite money. Carr is coming off his best season, albeit one that ended early with a broken fibula, as he tossed 28 touchdowns against six interceptions and helped the Raiders to 12 wins and their first playoff berth since 2002.

Colts quarterback Andrew Luck fell just shy of the $25MM mark on the extension he signed last summer, when he inked a five-year, $122.97MM pact that includes a record $87MM in guarantees. Jason Cole of Bleacher Report noted last month that the 26-year-old Carr’s next deal could surpass Luck’s, which jibes with the latest from Rapoport. And Rapoport adds that Kirk Cousins‘ talks with the Redskins could affect Carr’s discussions with the Raiders. In the event Washington extends Cousins for a record amount before Oakland locks up Carr, the latter might have to go back to the drawing board in negotiations, Rapoport suggests, which could be problematic if it happens close to the start of camp.

Without an extension, Carr would play 2017 for a relative pittance and presumably either re-sign with the Raiders or get the $22MM-plus franchise tag next offseason. The Raiders would rather not have to resort to deploying the tag, as Cole reported, so it would behoove them to re-up Carr over the next month-plus.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Raiders' Relocation Spurred Marshawn Lynch Out Of Retirement

  • The Raiders’ forthcoming move to Las Vegas inspired Marshawn Lynch to come out of retirement and join the franchise as its time in Oakland nears an end, the running back told media on Tuesday (Twitter links via SiriusXM NFL Radio and Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal). Lynch, an Oakland native, expressed regret that “a lot of Oakland kids won’t have the opportunity to see their idols play football anymore.” The Raiders are down to their final two or three years in Oakland and will head to Vegas in 2020. Lynch won’t make that trek, it seems, as he’s already 31 and only under contract through next season.

Minor NFL Transactions: 6/5/17

Here are today’s minor moves.

  • The Patriots signed cornerback William Likely and waived defensive end Corey Vereen with an injury designation. A 5-foot-7, 175-pound player, Likely could factor into New England’s return-men competition, Mike Reiss of ESPN.com tweets. The rookie UDFA played four years at Maryland and notched six interceptions as a sophomore in 2014.
  • Former Minnesota Golden Gophers linebacker Jack Lynn signed with the Falcons, who waived fullback Soma Vainuku to make room, Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com reports. He’s a UDFA rookie. Vanaiku’s ouster should pit Derrick Coleman and rookie Tyler Renew against one another at fullback, per McClure.
  • The Broncos waived rookie UDFA tackle Erik Austell, Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post tweets. A Charleston Southern product, Austell was one of the 13 UDFAs the Broncos signed coming out of draft weekend.
  • The Chiefs added former Texans wideout Tevin Jones, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle tweets. Jones entered the league as a UDFA out of Memphis last year. He hasn’t seen any game action. The Texans signed Jones to a reserve/futures deal in January but cut him last month.
  • The Saints signed wide receiver Dan Arnold and cut defensive end Drew Iddings, Nick Underhill of The Advocate reports (on Twitter). Arnold comes to New Orleans from Division III Wisconsin-Platteville. Iddings spent time in camp with the Raiders last year and was with both the Panthers and Saints this spring.
  • Swapping out interior offensive linemen, the Titans signed center Marc Spelman and waived center/guard Karim Barton. The latter has bounced around for a few years, being signed to reserve/futures deals by the Browns (2015), Texans (’16) and Titans (’17). The 25-year-old has never played in a game. Spelman comes out of Illinois State. He went to the Bears’ rookie minicamp last month.

Marshawn Lynch Could Earn An Extra $5.5MM In Incentives

  • According to ESPN.com’s Sheil Kapadia, Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch has several performance-based incentives in his contract that could add $5.5MM to his salary in 2017 and $2MM in 2018. As the writer explains, the running back could earn this extra money via incentives for “rushing yards, rushing touchdowns, the Raiders making the playoffs, Lynch making the Pro Bowl, Lynch earning regular-season MVP honors and Lynch earning Super Bowl MVP honors.”

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Opinion: Derek Carr Could Wait For Contract Until 2018

  • Derek Carr has already indicated he won’t discuss an extension once the regular season begins, but Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk opines that the Raiders quarterback may not want to negotiate a new deal until the campaign concludes. At that point, Carr would be able to exert enormous leverage over Oakland, as the club would be forced to deploy the exclusive franchise tag to ward off potential suitors. Thanks to the extraordinary value of the quarterback franchise tag, Carr could demand north of $90MM in three-year cash flow, and could also extract concessions such as having his future salaries tied to a percentage of the salary cap, per Florio.

Raiders Sign Six Draft Picks

  • The Raiders have announced the signings of six picks, meaning they’ve now locked up two-thirds of their nine-player draft class. Fourth-round offensive lineman David Sharpe, fifth-round linebacker Marquel Lee and four seventh-rounders – Shalom Luani (defensive back, Washington State), Jylan Ware (offensive tackle, Alabama State), Elijah Hood (running back, North Carolina) and Treyvon Hester (defensive tackle, Toledo) – are now under contract. The 6-foot-6, 343-pound Sharpe was the No. 1 left tackle at Florida over the two previous years, starting 26 games, though he’s likely to serve as a guard in the pros, according to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com. Lee, meanwhile, saw action in all four of his years at Wake Forest and racked up 100 tackles in two of those seasons. All told, he amassed 41 tackles for loss and 14.5 sacks (7.5 last year) with the Demon Deacons. Despite that impressive production, Zierlein regards Lee as more of a potential backup linebacker/special teamer than a starter in the NFL.