The New York Jets better get on their horses if they are serious about finding a veteran quarterback to start the 2023 season. Other teams are already on the move.
Las Vegas has granted their former franchise quarterback, Derek Carr, permission to visit with the New Orleans Saints. The visit is scheduled to take place Wednesday afternoon.
Carr, the franchise record holder in almost every statistical category was benched late in the 2022-23 season with the expectation that he would not return to the Raiders. Las Vegas has a February 15th deadline to either trade or cut their former second-round pick before a $40 million contract is awarded to the quarterback.
New Orleans is the first team that has reached out and received permission for Carr. Before the visit, the Raiders had preliminarily agreed to trade compensation, although a deal is not seen as likely as contract talks will need to get underway shortly after.
The Saints are over the cap by $60 million, one of the largest cap penalties currently held by a team in the NFL to date. Far more financial planning will need to be done before Carr is even considered to be in Louisiana.
For the Jets, Carr’s first visit poses a significant challenge to the team. New York is set to be over the cap by just $3 million but extensions and restructured deals could lead to a bevy of cap space being made over the next couple of weeks. With a plethora of draft picks, the Jets have more resources and space available to carry a contract like Car’s without gutting the team.
Of course, there’s a reason the Jets haven’t jumped after New Orleans.
While the Jets remain as one of the top teams to add a quarterback this offseason, the name many continue to connect to is four-time NFL MVP, Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers is expected to be moved this offseason and New York has reportedly been ready to throw a substantial deal for the quarterback’s services.
They aren’t the only team though.
Las Vegas has jumped New York as favorites for the Super Bowl-winning quarterback with Rodgers’ relationship with Devante Adams as a big reason why.
In short, the Jets are in a very compromising position. If they jump in after New Orleans on Derek Carr, it could lead them to miss out on a player like Aaron Rodgers. However, if they let Carr go to New Orleans, and Rodgers chooses Las Vegas as his next destination, the Jets will have missed out on the two biggest quarterback names currently on the market.
A deal between Carr, the Saints, and Vegas is not seen as likely at this current time. So while New York will be monitoring what happens during the quarterback’s visit, a deal is not something the team has to worry about currently.
However, it does show that New York will need to be more proactive than passive as they look to change their 7-10 team to a playoff contender.