The Raiders are reportedly close to a deal that would bring former Buccaneer QB Jeff Garcia back to the Bay Area for the third time.
This would be the ultimate homecoming for Jeff Garcia who grew up in Gilroy and went to school at San Jose State. After college, he played in the CFL for 7 years before getting a shot to come back to the Bay Area where he played for the 49ers. He played with the Niners for 5 years, making the pro bowl 3 of those years. After that, he bounced around 4 different teams in the last five years (Cleveland, Detroit, Philadelphia, Tampa Bay), so it stands to reason that at the ripe age of 39, Garcia would like to finish his career in Oakland. He was reportedly told that he would be given a chance to start but we all know that is not going to happen barring injury to JaMarcus Russell.
The Raiders have been in the market for a solid veteran backup since the season ended and Garcia is the perfect choice. If Russell was to go down with injury, Garcia has proven throughout his career that he is capable of coming in and being a solid quarterback at a moments notice. He makes good decisions most of the time and even at his age, he is stil quite athletic. He was the only proven commodity in the free agent market this offseason. So add one more acquisition that has paid off with Al Davis’ new “wait and see” approach.
The Raiders may not have Mike Lombardi as the GM or John Gruden on the sidelines but they are acting like it of late. With this news, not only will the Raiders have a collection of decent Qbs, but two of them were former Buccaneer starters (the other being Bruce Gradkowski).
This may signal the long predicted end of Andrew Walter’s career with the Raiders. As he has slipped from the one time quarterback of the future to being relegated to third string. Last year he was even below cast-off Marques Tuiasosopa on the depth chart. That is a sad fall from grace for Walter who could possibly start for a team that has a solid Oline and is looking for a pocket passer. He will be shopped in the upcoming draft and is likely to garner somewhere in the neighborhood of a sixth round pick (Perhaps we could get our pick back from Miami that we traded for Samson Satele?). Either that or he could be used to move up in a round to get a player the Raiders have their eye on (Al has made at least one move up in the draft nearly every year).
And since ESPN has been listing Bruce Gradkowski as the only significant addition to the Raiders for about two months now, he must be a lock to make this team right? Afteral, when has ESPN ever been behind the times on their Raider coverage?