Davante Adams Influence Led Raiders to Bench Jimmy Garoppolo, Claims Rob Gronkowski

Raiders navigate organizational shakeup and quarterback transition.

by Nouman Rasool
Davante Adams Influence Led Raiders to Bench Jimmy Garoppolo, Claims Rob Gronkowski
© Mike Mulholland/Getty Images

A single 11-yard catch is beneath the usual standards of an All-Pro receiver like Davante Adams. Yet, this startling stat materialized during the Las Vegas Raiders' Week 8 debacle against the Detroit Lions—a fifth loss in eight games.

Adams, the cornerstone of the Raiders' offense, was notably speechless post-game. This defeat catalyzed a seismic shift within the Raiders' organization. They parted ways with both Josh McDaniels and Dave Ziegler, subsequently appointing Antonio Pierce as the interim head coach.

Adding to the shakeup, they've announced Aidan O’Connell as the new starting quarterback, sidelining Jimmy Garoppolo. During an episode of the FanDuel TV's Up and Adams, Kay Adams and NFL legend Rob Gronkowski analyzed the Raiders' predicament.

On probing whether Adams played a role in the quarterback shuffle, Gronkowski opined, “Davante unquestionably wields considerable influence. He's not just a player; he's an experience that fans pay to witness. A talent like Adams isn't just listened to—he's heeded."

It's no secret the Raiders have invested heavily in Adams.

Post his trade, they inked a staggering five-year, $141.25 million contract extension, making him the top-earning wide receiver. His 2022 performance, boasting 100 catches, 1,516 yards, and 14 touchdowns alongside Derek Carr, attested to his worth.

Yet, team dynamics failed to mirror individual brilliance, as evidenced by the Raiders' 6-11 season finish. Eight games into this season, Adams has recorded 47 catches, 539 yards, and three touchdowns. With a 3-5 scorecard, the team's next challenge is against the New York Giants.

Emerging as the new offensive focal point is Aidan O’Connell. Drafted in the fourth round of 2023, O’Connell showcased his prowess during his NFL debut in Week 4 against the Los Angeles Chargers. With Garoppolo sidelined due to concussion, O’Connell marked 24 completions for 238 yards.

Later, against the Chicago Bears, he threw his maiden NFL touchdown pass. The decision to bench Garoppolo is laced with financial repercussions. The Raiders had previously committed to a three-year, $72.75 million contract for him, a hefty figure for a player now in the shadows. Only time will tell if this bold move reaps the desired dividends.

Davante Adams Jimmy Garoppolo Rob Gronkowski