Free Agency

Derek Carr Agrees to 4-Year, $150M Contract With Saints

After meeting with several teams at the NFL Combine, Derek Carr has agreed to join a new team.

The former Las Vegas Raiders quarterback and the New Orleans Saints agreed on a four-year deal worth $150 million with $100 million in total guarantees, NFL Media reported. Although Carr also met with the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers, his preferred destination was New Orleans to reunite with former Raiders coach Dennis Allen. The Saints made their final pitch to Carr late on Sunday night.

Carr responded to the report on Monday morning via Twitter.

Carr will get $60 million guaranteed at signing with another $10 million coming in Year 3 of the contract. The deal is structured to help the Saints, who were $18 million over the cap, according to Over The Cap, before signing Carr.

Over the weekend, the Saints cleared $12.724 million in cap space by restructuring the contracts of linebacker Demario Davis and tight end Taysom Hill.

Carr met with the Saints twice. The first meeting came before he was released, as the Saints and Raiders discussed possible trade scenarios. However, Carr refused to waive his no-trade clause, forcing the Raiders to release him before having to pay him $40.4 million over the next two years.

The Saints finished last season at 7-10 in the lackluster NFC South. Jameis Winston began the season as the starter but was injured and replaced by Andy Dalton the rest of the way. Carr should be an upgrade over Winston and Dalton for the Saints.

Winston and Dalton accounted for 22 touchdown passes in 17 games last season, while Carr had 24 in 15 games.

Carr spent nine seasons with the Raiders, made four Pro Bowls and led them to the playoffs in 2016 and 2021. However, his time with the Raiders ended abruptly this season. Coach Josh McDaniels benched Carr for Jarrett Stidham in Week 15, causing Carr to leave the team to avoid being a distraction.

With Carr off the market, the Jets, who have made it clear they want to add a veteran quarterback this offseason, will likely have to pivot to Aaron Rodgers or Jimmy Garoppolo.

Rodgers has said his decision to play in 2023 will come “soon enough,” and the Green Bay Packers have said they want a resolution by the start of free agency on March 15.

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