Analyst Predicts Gardner Minshew II to Start for Raiders

The Las Vegas Raiders are high on Aidan O'Connell, but could veteran quarterback Gardner Minshew II earn the starting job this offseason?
Dec 31, 2023; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Gardner Minshew (10) passes
Dec 31, 2023; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Gardner Minshew (10) passes / Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
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One of the biggest questions going forward for the Las Vegas Raiders is who is going to start under center in Week 1.

The competition will be between second-year Raiders quarterback Aidan O'Connell and offseason acquisition Gardner Minshew II. Right now, it's O'Connell's job to lose, as the young quarterback comes off an admirable rookie campaign and has been deemed the starter by Raiders coach Antonio Pierce until further notice.

"Around the NFL Podcast" co-host Gregg Rosenthal, however, believes Minshew will be the Raiders' QB1.

"It was surprising to hear Antonio Pierce say second-year pro Aidan O'Connell will get the first snaps of the offseason at quarterback," Rosenthal wrote in a recent article where he predicted each AFC West team's starting lineup for the 2024 season. "O'Connell was promising as a fourth-round rookie (better than No. 1 overall pick Bryce Young!), but the money speaks louder here, no? The team gave Gardner Minshew $15 million fully guaranteed on a two-year deal."

Minshew comes off one of the best seasons of his career, having been selected to his first career Pro Bowl. The then-Indianapolis Colts quarterback threw for a career-high 3,305 yards while recording 15 passing touchdowns. He did so making just 13 starts in 17 games.

Minshew made waves in his rookie season back in 2019-20 when he posted 3,271 passing yards and 21 touchdowns in just 14 games, 12 of which he started, for the Jacksonville Jaguars, who drafted him in the sixth round of the 2019 NFL Draft.

Rosenthal also has some interesting predictions on the Raiders' offensive line. He has recently signed veteran offensive lineman Andrus Peat starting at left guard and Thayer Munford Jr. starting at right tackle.

With Peat and rookie offensive lineman Jackson Powers-Johnson starting at the guard positions, Rosenthal has Dylan Parham absent from the starting lineup. Parham has started every game for the Silver and Black since being drafted in 2022.

Defensively, Rosenthal has second-year Raiders cornerback Jakorian Bennett starting in the secondary. He also has defensive tackle John Jenkins starting up front, an interesting prediction considering Las Vegas started moving former first-round pick Tyree Wilson to the inside last season.

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Aidan Champion