Jimmy Garoppolo signs with Las Vegas Raiders, Fantasy Reaction
The Las Vegas Raiders got the top available quarterback in this year’s free agency class, inking Jimmy Garoppolo to a three-year, $67.5 million deal with a reported $34 million in guaranteed money.
While this wasn’t the most impressive quarterback market, the Raiders did well to address a massive need after severing ties with Derek Carr and letting Jarrett Stidham walk in free agency. This move also reunites Garoppolo with Josh McDaniels.
However, there’s a lot lurking right beneath the surface of this deal. The Raiders currently hold the No. 7 pick in next month’s draft and have been rumored to be one of the teams in play for a quarterback. A developmental prospect like Anthony Richardson or Will Levis would make a lot of sense for Vegas in that spot.
With Garoppolo, you have a bridge who could easily get you to 2024. That would give plenty of time for Richardson or Levis to develop, much like what we saw the Chiefs do with Patrick Mahomes.
While Vegas’ path in the draft has yet to be determined, Garoppolo will be the starter, and he slides into an interesting spot. He’ll get to throw the ball to arguably the league’s top wideout in Davante Adams, along with having Darren Waller and Hunter Renfrow at his disposal. The Raiders also retained Josh Jacobs’ services after placing the franchise tag on the veteran running back last week.
No one is going to mistake Garoppolo for a top-12 fantasy quarterback, but this landing spot has him very much in the QB2 conversation for 2023. His track record supports this analysis. We’ve only seen him as a full-time starter for an entire season just twice in his career, but he finished inside the top 20 fantasy quarterbacks both seasons. In 2021, he started 15 games for the 49ers and finished the season as fantasy’s No. 17 quarterback. He started all 16 regular season games for San Francisco in 2019 and ranked QB14 for the season. Garoppolo won’t be viable in 1QB leagues, but he’ll be in the mix as a second or third quarterback in superflex and 2QB formats.
Of course, the elephant in the room for Garoppolo is his health, or lack thereof. He suffered an ACL tear in 2018, missed significant time in 2020 due to multiple ankle injuries and is coming off a season-ending broken foot last season. Still, Garoppolo doesn’t need to be the future of the Raiders. He just has to be the present. He figures to have a relatively easy transition into the offense given the time spent with McDaniels in New England. We’ll get our answer as to whether Garoppolo is a bridge option in next month’s draft.