After weeks of speculation, free agent QB Jimmy Garoppolo is signing with the Las Vegas Raiders, taking over the vacant starting quarterback position from the franchise’s all-time passing leader, Derek Carr, who signed with the Saints earlier this month. Garoppolo, 31, has spent the last six seasons with the San Francisco 49ers but was originally drafted by the New England Patriots while Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels served on Bill Belichick’s staff.
Garoppolo is reportedly signing a three-year, $67.5 million contract with $34 million guaranteed, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter. While that is certainly starter money in the NFL, the relatively low total of guaranteed money may suggest that Garoppolo is a short-term plan for the Raiders.
The Carolina Panthers made a big move this week to move up to the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft to presumably take a quarterback, and with the Raiders picking behind a number of quarterback-needy teams in the draft order, Garoppolo can now serve as the true starter if the team fails to secure a rookie quarterback, or he can be an affordable bridge and mentor in a scenario in which the Raiders draft one.
Garoppolo has a history of winning in the NFL and was a successful starter for years with the 49ers, including playing a majority of the last two seasons after San Francisco made a big move of their own to draft QB Trey Lance. Garoppolo and the 49ers won the NFC Championship in 2019-20 before losing to the Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV.
Garoppolo walks into an ideal scenario for a free agent quarterback and will lead McDaniels’ offense, a coach he has familiarity with. The Raiders have strong offensive weapons in WR Davante Adams, RB Josh Jacobs, TE Darren Waller and WR Hunter Renfrow. With a bit more investment in the offensive line, Garoppolo could be leading a successful Raiders offense in 2023.
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