National

Las Vegas Raiders 2024 NFL offseason primer: Antonio Pierce got the job, now he needs to find his QB

Las Vegas Raiders' 2023 season: 8-9, missed playoffs

Overview: A tough start to the season ended in a new wave of hope and swagger for the Raiders. Josh McDaniels was fired as head coach after a 3-5 start, but the vibes quickly turned around when Antonio Pierce took over in an interim basis.

After coaching the team to a 5-4 finish and earning the respect of key players in the locker room, Pierce was promoted from interim to full-time head coach and the team hired Tom Telesco to help oversee the construction of the roster. Time will tell if this plan works and makes sense for the team, but a new quarterback to go with the new regime is high on the list of priorities for the Raiders.

Key free agents 

RB Josh Jacobs DL Bilal Nichols C Andre James OT Jermaine Eluemunor

Who's in/out? This one is tough to figure out with a new front office taking over, but Josh Jacobs is probably someone they should figure out how to keep for another year just to give their offense some credibility in 2024. Keeping one or both of their offensive linemen hitting free agency would also help their offensive transition next season.

Key free agent needs 

QuarterbackCornerback Defensive line

Why the holes? Jimmy Garoppolo is on his way out of town, opening up a potential quarterback competition with Aidan O'Connell for whoever the Raiders add at the position. They also need more juice at defensive line and cornerback to make life easier for defensive coordinator Patrick Graham, who led a fantastic defense in the back half of the season.

Do they have the money?: Yes. The Raiders are projected to kick off the new league year with $42.6 million in cap space, according to Spotrac.

Potential notable cuts

QB Jimmy Garoppolo WR Hunter Renfrow S Marcus Epps

Why they might be gone: Garoppolo is essentially already gone after a failed one-year experiment in Las Vegas, and now he's reportedly suspended the first two games of the 2024 season for violating the NFL's performing-enhancing substances policy. Hunter Renfrow wasn't used much last season and makes sense as a cap casualty to free up a little more than $8 million. Releasing Epps would save an additional $3.4 million.

Draft picks

1st round: No. 132nd round: No. 44 overall3rd round: No. 77 overall4th round 5th round 6th round (via Chiefs)7th round (via Patriots)7th round (via Titans)7th round (via Vikings)

Good draft fit 

Alabama EDGE Dallas Turner

Why him? The Raiders picked Tyree Wilson in the first round last year, but they still need a real force to make life easier for Maxx Crosby, who has become their ironman on defense. Dallas Turner is a high-upside pass rusher that makes sense for the Raiders.

What can move the fantasy football needle this offseason?

The Raiders have some good players on offense. Davante Adams is still a verifiable star-quality No. 1 receiver. Jakobi Meyer is one of the game's most underrated flankers and is rock solid in all phases. Michael Mayer flashed as a rookie tight end and the run game was productive with both Josh Jacobs and Zamir White once Antonio Pierce took over as head coach. All of these pieces could be a part of a good draft plan in 2024 but they have to have a real quarterback plan. Something like a mid-level veteran competing with Aiden O'Connell doesn't move the needle in enough of a positive direction to grab my interest. — Matt Harmon

Listen

news

weather

traffic

mobile apps

Everything you love about wsbradio.com and more! Tap on any of the buttons below to download our app.

amazon alexa

Enable our Skill today to listen live at home on your Alexa Devices!