By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
Oakland Raiders Head Coach Jon Gruden has been known to make tough decisions since being hired earlier this season. He was responsible for trading away Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper.
Mack was traded to the Chicago Bears for draft capital, including two first-round draft picks. Cooper was traded to the Dallas Cowboys for another first-round draft pick.
The Raiders have three first-round draft picks, including their own in the 2019 NFL Draft. One of those picks could use used on a quarterback.
Derek Carr is the Raiders current starting quarterback. But the team could cut ties with the former second-round draft pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.
The 27-year-old Bakersfield, California native previously signed a five-year, $125 million contract with the team. He signed the deal with the previous leadership group of former general manager Reggie McKenzie and head coach Jack Del Rio.
Yet, there is a way for the Raiders to get out of his contract following this season, according to Spotrac. They could release Carr — who then would be a very attractive quarterback for teams like the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the Washington Redskins — and only receive a $7.5 million dead cap hit.
His present dead cap hit is $32 million for the 2018 season. In 2020, it would go down to $5 million, before lowering to $2.5 million in 2021.
By doing this, the franchise would be responsible for paying him $47.6 million over the last two seasons. Then, be clear to use the money from getting rid of Carr’s massive contract to better upgrade the team that is several years away from being good again.
In 2019 — if the Gruden leadership decided to keep Carr — the Raiders would be responsible for a $19.9 million base salary. He will also be owed $18.9 million in 2020.
Carr would also receive $19.5 million in base salary in 2021. And a $19.7 million base salary in 2022 before becoming a free agent in 2023.
Gruden will continue to make tough decisions following the season. One of those decisions could be releasing Carr no matter how devastating the fan base will feel.
Carr is 4-11 this season in 15 starts. He has gone 357 of 521 for 3,854 yards. He also has 19 touchdowns and eight interceptions.
On Christmas Eve, he had his fifth game, where he did not throw for more than 200 yards in a contest. He had 167 yards in the Raiders 27-14 win over the Broncos on Monday Night Football.
The 167 passing yards were his second-fewest in a game this season. He went 23 of 31 for 142 yards in a 27-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.