Derek Carr enters NFL free agency following release from Raiders


The Las Vegas Raiders have released longtime quarterback Derek Carr after an offseason stalemate that saw the franchise try to trade its signal-caller following his benching at the end of the 2022 NFL season.

Carr, 31, has been the face of the Raiders since being selected with the No. 36 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. He has started 142 games since entering the league – starting every game six of his nine seasons in the league – and thrown for 35,222 passing yards and 217 touchdowns. 

Carr enters 2023 NFL free agency with a number of expected suitors – the Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints and New York Jets – rumored to be in line for his services.

Aaron Rodgers and Lamar Jackson will likely get more attention during the 2023 NFL offseason, but Carr will likely have his choice in landing spots before the start of NFL free agency on Wednesday, March 15. Like Carr, who signed a three-year, $121.5 million contract extension with the Raiders prior to the 2022 NFL season, Rodgers and Jackson would need to be traded or released by their respective clubs. 


The reason for Carr’s early release in 2023 is because the contract extension he signed has a no trade clause, which the QB elected to exercise. Let’s dive further into Carr’s contract and why he was released:

Why did the Raiders not trade Derek Carr?

The short answer is: They tried to. Very hard. 

But alas, Carr had all the cards thanks to the no trade clause in the three-year contract extension he signed in April 2022.

Why did the Raiders cut Derek Carr now?

Carr’s money for the 2023-24 NFL season ($33 million, per Spotrac) was set to kick in and become fully guaranteed. The Raiders had to move on before that deadline Tuesday afternoon. 

What team will Derek Carr play for in 2023?

The list of QB-needy NFL teams is predictably long, including pretty much every team in the NFC South.

The Jets and Tennessee Titans figure to be involved in the AFC, along with the Houston Texans, who are picking No. 2 in the 2023 NFL Draft and might eschew a QB in free agency in March for a rookie one in April.

Who is the Raiders QB in 2023?

Rodgers has been rumored to Las Vegas, but right now the starting quarterback is Jarrett Stidham, who started the last two games of the 2022 season for the Raiders. 

Stidham, a former fourth-round selection by the New England Patriots, was traded to Las Vegas during the 2022 offseason. He started two games for the Raiders in 2022, throwing for 365 yards and three touchdowns in a 37-34 overtime loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

During his four-year NFL career, Stidham has thrown for 926 yards, six touchdowns and seven interceptions.