By Nick Grunewald, WC Reporter
LAS VEGAS, NV (WC) -Former Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr has agreed to a 4yr/$150M deal with the New Orleans Saints.
After a nine-year stint with the Raiders organization, Carr was released after being benched and sent home for the last two weeks of the season. Carr had previously met with the Carolina Panthers and New York Jets.
Carr’s decision to sign with New Orleans will reunite him with Saints head coach Dennis Allen, who was the head coach of the Raiders when Carr was drafted in 2014. New Orleans has been the most interested team in Carr’s talents, having met with him first all the way back in February when he was still under contract with the Raiders – Carr declined to waive his no-trade clause when the two teams agreed to a trade, instead making his way to Nola via free-agency.
The Saints are in cap space hell – currently $18.2 million over the $224.8 million salary cap – and will need to restructure some veteran deals to get under the cap by the March 15 deadline. The impending release of Jameis Winston will clear up about $12.8 million room but they’ll still have work to do, meaning the front office is not done making moves yet.
Carr joins a team who was 7-10 a season ago, third in their division, and the league’s oldest roster. Is he a big enough upgrade over Winston and Andy Dalton to win the NFC South? Vegas sure thinks so as the Saints odds to win the division jumped to +170 following the news of Carr’s signing. But does he bring enough to boost their Super Bowl chances? Not at this point in his career.
New Orleans surely felt comfortable making this deal as they looked at the wide open NFC South. Tom Brady retired from the Bucs and they haven’t found a legitimate replacement yet while Carolina and Atlanta seem more likely to look to the draft for their next signal caller.