As of February 15, 2021, the most notable quarterback decision the Las Vegas Raiders have made in this year’s offseason is the re-signing of Nathan Peterman to a one-year deal. Since his infamous five-interception game in 2017, Peterman has appeared in just eight games, starting three of them (all for the Buffalo Bills). As a Raider, Peterman has recorded three completions for 25 yards.
Having a “project” third-string quarterback is never a bad thing, but his re-signing creates some questions surrounding Peterman’s potential. Currently, the Raiders have four quarterbacks listed on their roster: Derek Carr, Marcus Mariota, Nathan Peterman, and Kyle Sloter. Peterman (26) is the youngest of the four, but this does not say much as their oldest is 29. For reference, Kyler Murray is 23 and Russell Wilson is 32. His age still ranks on the younger side around the league, but unlike his fellow youthful quarterbacks, Peterman is missing years of his prime riding the bench. Now, we all know Jon Gruden’s love of quarterbacks, but how much does he actually see in Peterman?
Million Dollar Parachute
If anything, Peterman’s one-year deal could lead some to believe that Gruden has him on a bit of a “prove it” deal, but as the second backup behind two quarterbacks worthy of starting, what can Peterman do to plead his case? Looking good in practice is obviously important, but nearly any NFL-level quarterback can do that. Hell, I looked great at my high school football team’s practice, but never saw the field.
Should the end goal be for Peterman to enter a season as a starter for the Raiders, there are even more questions to be answered, such as: What will happen with Carr and Mariota? Sure, the Raiders could trade both Carr and Mariota in the coming future, receive impressive non-quarterback returns, and start Peterman, but it is hard to believe that Gruden has that level of faith in the dispelled quarterback.
It is clear that Peterman stays around for Gruden to attempt to work his supposed “quarterback whisperer” Meanwhile, considering the lack of playing time or trade calls Peterman received, he still needs more work. Yet again, the question falls back to Peterman’s potential. He is currently caught up in a tough situation behind Carr and Mariota. His role appears to play in preseason games.
Peterman does not garner trade interest. Plus, he doesn’t display enough promise to even surpass Mariota on the depth chart. The series of incredible events that would have to happen to lead to Peterman starting does not warrant him being extended. Yet, he continues to find himself hanging around on the roster. Netflix could not produce a more incredible comeback story for Peterman to find himself starting. However, let’s leave the storybook endings to Hollywood. Of the quarterbacks in the division, Peterman may rank near the bottom.