Oakland signed Marcus Mariota yesterday, to a two-year deal worth over $17 million, with $7.5 million guaranteed in 2020. Make no mistake: this is backup quarterback money. The only starting quarterbacks who will make less than him this season are on their rookie deals. But it does present competition for Derek Carr.
Good competition....well, that's less certain.
Mariota came out of the draft one pick after Jameis Winston, who I stumped for yesterday. Winston has thrown a lot of interceptions and been benched a couple times, but at least he's been a productive fantasy quarterback. Mariota not so much, with last year his bottoming out point.
If we were ranking quarterbacks last year on fantasy points per game, Mariota would have snuck into the No. 32 spot -- whoo, NFL starter. Among quarterbacks who started at least 5 games a year ago, he was down near the bottom of the list.
|QUARTERBACK PER GAME NUMBERS, 2019|
|Lamar Jackson, Balt.||15||208.5||80.4||288.9||2.87||30.9|
|Jameis Winston, T.B.||16||319.3||15.6||334.9||2.13||26.7|
|Ryan Tannehill, Ten.||10||259.8||18.1||277.9||2.60||26.2|
|Matthew Stafford, Det.||8||312.4||8.3||320.6||2.38||25.9|
|Deshaun Watson, Hou.||15||256.8||27.5||284.3||2.27||25.9|
|Dak Prescott, Dall.||16||306.4||17.3||323.7||2.06||25.8|
|Patrick Mahomes, K.C.||14||287.9||15.6||303.5||2.00||24.4|
|Daniel Jones, NYG||12||250.8||22.8||273.7||2.17||24.2|
|Russell Wilson, Sea.||16||256.9||21.4||278.3||2.13||24.0|
|Drew Brees, N.O.||11||270.8||-.4||270.5||2.55||23.9|
|Matt Ryan, Atl.||15||297.7||9.8||307.5||1.80||23.3|
|Ryan Fitzpatrick, Mia.||13||259.1||18.3||277.4||1.77||22.6|
|Kyler Murray, Ariz.||16||232.6||34.0||266.6||1.50||21.9|
|Josh Allen, Buff.||16||193.1||31.9||224.9||1.81||21.6|
|Carson Wentz, Phil.||16||252.4||15.2||267.6||1.75||21.5|
|Andy Dalton, Cin.||13||268.8||5.6||274.4||1.54||21.1|
|Jared Goff, LAR||16||289.9||2.5||292.4||1.50||21.0|
|Gardner Minshew, Jac.||12||237.4||27.5||264.9||1.50||21.0|
|Aaron Rodgers, G.B.||16||250.1||11.4||261.6||1.69||20.9|
|Philip Rivers, LAC||16||288.4||1.8||290.3||1.44||20.5|
|Jimmy Garoppolo, S.F.||16||248.6||3.9||252.5||1.75||20.2|
|Tom Brady, N.E.||16||253.6||2.1||255.7||1.69||20.1|
|Kyle Allen, Car.||12||252.3||8.4||260.7||1.58||20.1|
|Kirk Cousins, Min.||15||240.2||4.2||244.4||1.80||19.9|
|Teddy Bridgewater, N.O.||5||241.0||6.4||247.4||1.80||19.9|
|Baker Mayfield, Cle.||16||239.2||8.8||248.0||1.56||19.6|
|Sam Darnold, NYJ||13||232.6||4.8||237.4||1.62||19.3|
|Derek Carr, Oak.||16||253.4||5.1||258.5||1.44||19.2|
|Jacoby Brissett, Ind.||15||196.1||15.2||211.3||1.47||17.9|
|Drew Lock, Den.||5||204.0||14.4||218.4||1.40||17.2|
|Mitchell Trubisky, Chi.||15||209.2||12.9||222.1||1.27||17.2|
|Marcus Mariota, Ten.||6||196.5||21.5||218.0||1.17||16.6|
|Mason Rudolph, Pitt.||8||190.5||4.4||194.9||1.25||15.0|
|Joe Flacco, Den.||8||227.8||2.5||230.3||.75||14.9|
|David Blough, Det.||5||196.8||6.2||203.0||1.00||14.9|
|Case Keenum, Was.||8||193.6||1.5||195.1||1.25||14.8|
|Dwayne Haskins, Was.||7||175.0||11.1||186.1||1.00||14.2|
|Devlin Hodges, Pitt.||6||146.2||7.8||154.0||.67||10.8|
Particularly grim-looking are the quarterbacks who showed up near him last year. Rudolph, Flacco, Blough, Keenum, Haskins, Hodges. Couple Steelers, couple Washington guys, a recently released veteran, a Lion backup who might not start another game in his career. Anybody think any of those players could beat out Derek Carr in 2020?
Mariota is a worthwhile enough flier for the Raiders. He's had moments where he played well in his career. But no one should be holding their breath for him to rise up and have a big season. I guess some might have said the same about the guy who pushed Mariota out of the lineup last season, Ryan Tannehill. It's possible. But unlikely.