If you’ll recall, Derek Carr’s name was bounced around trade rumors last offseason. And for what it’s worth, the Bears would have been interested had he become available. Ultimately, Carr wasn’t made available.
Nevertheless, there’s a sense of déjà vu developing within me. And it begins with this:
Multiple @NFL sources indicate to me that Derek Carr is a hot commodity. And it is expected that multiple teams will pursue him via trade That could lead to the @Raiders pursuing Deshaun Watson in a blockbuster trade. My story:https://t.co/rnxHJK9KC0
— Vincent Bonsignore (@VinnyBonsignore) February 3, 2021
Insiders relay to Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal that the Raiders could shop starting quarterback Derek Carr in a trade that creates a path toward a pursuit of Deshaun Watson. And the Chicago Bears are among the teams that could, in turn, get involved in a Carr sweepstakes. Bonsignore also throws the Colts, Patriots, Washington’s Football Team, and Saints as possible suitors.
As for the cost of doing business, Bonsignore writes the Raiders would have to net two first-round picks to get into the conversation. They would then package those picks in a potential Watson deal. It’s a bold strategy, but one that piques my interest. Nothing like a pseudo three-way deal involving quarterbacks switching sides.
Carr, 29, is coming off a 4,103-yard, 27-touchdown season with the Raiders. It’s his third consecutive 4,000-yard passing season. That’s significant, especially considering that the Bears have never had a 4,000-yard passer. So while the biggest of big dreams would have the Bears going all in for Watson, landing Carr as a consolation prize wouldn’t be the worst-case scenario. In fact, I’d argue Carr represents the type of real upgrade the offense needs.
Carr’s name was always in the back of our mind as a possible target because of the fit, previous rumors, and some loose connections. For instance, Carr and Bears star Khalil Mack have a strong friendship that dates back to their days as Raiders teammates. And Bears Head Coach Matt Nagy saw plenty of Carr while in the AFC West when he was coaching alongside Andy Reid. So if anyone knows what Carr is capable of, it would be two of Chicago’s biggest names.
And to think, it all comes back to Deshaun Watson. Because when a quarterback of Watson’s caliber requests a trade that puts him on the market, almost all of the NFL’s teams should be throwing themselves into the conversation. Even teams with established quarterbacks. Let’s face it, if your team doesn’t have an elite quarterback at the peak of his powers, then your team should be trying to get one.
And that’s what the Raiders might be angling to do. If the Bears can’t get Watson, themselves, but a related deal helps the Bears, then so be it.
For the moment, let’s sit tight on these Carr rumors. Because if the Raiders are going to make a push for Watson, they’ll need to upgrade their draft capital. Floating Carr onto a QB-hungry market is one way to see how much trade capital is out there. And with the Bears being desperate, cooking up a(nother) blockbuster deal with the Raiders doesn’t seem all that far-fetched.