Traded to the Raiders last offseason for a pair of top draft picks, former Green Bay Packers star receiver Davante Adams was reunited with his friend and college teammate Derek Carr in Las Vegas. Entering his age-30 season, Adams inked a five-year contract that pays him an average of $28.5 million per season with $67.5 million fully guaranteed.
Though the Raiders went 6-11 and Carr was eventually benched and sent away from the team as the Raiders dropped their final three games to improve their draft position, Adams had a great first season in Vegas with 14 touchdowns, 100 catches and more than 1,500 receiving yards. That production is a testament to his work ethic, as Adams was outspoken about his displeasure with head coach Josh McDaniels’s treatment of Carr. “I don’t think anybody was excited about it in here,” Adams said of Carr’s benching. “I wouldn’t be here right now if he wasn’t here. I think everybody knows how I feel about him.”
Despite how Adams feels about him, Carr is now a member of the New Orleans Saints following his release earlier this year, and former 49er Jimmy Garoppolo (who played for McDaniels while he was the offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots) is the new starting quarterback in the desert. Speaking with The Ringer, Adams made it pretty clear he’s not sold on the decision to replace Carr with Jimmy G and some other moves, like trading top tight end Darren Waller to the Giants, that general manager Dave Zielger and the Raider front office have made.
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“[The front office] think this is the best bet for us right now to put us in a position to be urgent,” Adams said. “We don’t see eye-to-eye on what we think is best for us right now. If we play a certain brand of ball, I can get [Garoppolo] to conform to whatever. But if we use him a certain type of way, then it’s going to make it tough for us to maximize who we should be this year.”
That’s not exactly a vote of confidence for Garoppolo, and the Raiders would be wise to take notice because they are going to need Adams’s buy-in to compete in a division where their starting quarterback is clearly last on the depth chart behind Patrick Mahomes (Chiefs), Justin Herbert (Chargers) and Russell Wilson (Broncos).
To his credit, Adams sounds like he’s going to do his best to give it a go. “I’m going to have to buy into this and try to be as optimistic as possible,” he said. “It’s not what I expected to happen, but it’s something that’s the reality now.”