NFL Rumors: Insider predicts Raiders drafting shocking QB at No. 13
The notion that the Las Vegas Raiders would be in the quarterback market for the 2024 offseason is far from a revelation. With new head coach Antonio Pierce and general manager Tom Telesco staring at Jimmy Garoppolo and Aidan O'Connell in the current QB room, some would say it's a must for the franchise moving forward.
How the Raiders plan to go about addressing quarterback is a much more difficult question to answer. In free agency, it's hard to decipher if they'd have the ability or desire to pursue someone like Kirk Cousins, or if they'd have to shop more in the bargain bin. They could be a Justin Fields trade destination, but that would require some major investment. And that leaves us with the 2024 NFL Draft.
Sitting at the No. 13 overall pick, Las Vegas isn't in prime position for a quarterback. The consensus Top 3 at the position -- Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, and Jayden Daniels -- will be well off of the board by the time the Raiders come on the clock. Moreover, most have assumed that the 13th pick is a bit early for the likes of Michael Penix Jr. or Bo Nix. So how about the draft's wild card QB, J.J. McCarthy?
ESPN NFL Draft insider Matt Miller ($) projected just that in his post-Senior Bowl mock draft, having the Raiders select the Michigan quarterback at No. 13. Here's what he had to say about his early prediction:
"The Raiders have a new general manager in Tom Telesco and must make finding a long-term quarterback the priority of the 2024 offseason (free agent signing Jimmy Garoppolo has not worked out). McCarthy, who started two years at Michigan, just turned 21 and has the requisite tools to be that player. He's mobile and tough as nails, and scouts praise his arm strength and ability to make difficult throws in big situations. He has thrown only 44 touchdown passes in college to nine interceptions and compared to the other top quarterbacks in this class, he's by far the least-experienced thrower. But his potential and ceiling have him worthy of a top-15 selection."
Now, it's important to note that Miller also projected the Denver Broncos tabbing Bo Nix as their guy just one selection ahead of the Raiders, which ultimately forced the McCarthy pick. But the Michigan standout is all potential. He wasn't asked to throw all that much with the Wolverines, but the arm talent, leadership, athleticism and poise for a 21-year-old are all there.
Perhaps the only thing that would hinder the Raiders or any team from using a first-round pick on J.J. McCarthy is this simple question: Are you willing to be your job that he'll reach his potential? That's the multi-million-dollar question, but Miller has Las Vegas answering yes after the Senior Bowl.