Dave Ziegler “confident” Jimmy Garoppolo will improve the Raiders
The Raiders made the decision at the end of last season that they needed to get better at the most important position in football. They benched Derek Carr the final two games of last season and released him last month after nine seasons as the team’s quarterback.
They signed Jimmy Garoppolo in free agency, and General Manager Dave Ziegler said he is “confident” the Raiders have upgraded the position.
Ziegler and head coach Josh McDaniels were with the Patriots when Garoppolo broke into the NFL as a backup to Tom Brady. So, they have familiarity with their new quarterback, and he has familiarity with their systems.
“Simply put: Proven leader, proven winner,” Ziegler told Tashan Reed of TheAthletic.com. “I think he’s won 70 percent of his starts. And you can caveat that with the whys and all that stuff but, at the end of the day, he was a part of winning a lot of football games. He’s a proven leader. He’s a proven winner, and the next part of that is obviously he’s been steeped in the offensive system that we run. And so, there’s an advantage in that, too. Simply put, that’s what it was.”
Garoppolo’s signing was delayed by a day, and his introductory press conference pushed back, after he agreed to terms. There was some concern outside the organization that maybe things had taken an unexpected turn. But Garoppolo ended up signing a three-year, $72.75 million deal.
Ziegler said the team “never had any concern” the deal would get done.
“It was just things contractually like language and stuff like that that we had to work through,” Ziegler told Reed. “There was zero worry at any point. We knew it was going to get done. It was just making sure that everything -- there’s a lot of protection and clauses and language and things like that -- so it just took a little bit longer once we all sat down and started to go through the contract. Because you talk about the framework, obviously, before, but when we actually were kind of going the nuts and the bolts of it, there was just a couple things that took a little bit longer to work through than we anticipated.”