Aidan O’Connell may very well be the biggest winner in the entire shakeup that the Las Vegas Raiders have opted to go through. After firing head coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler, O’Connell has taken over as the new starting quarterback for the franchise. He has shown flashes of big-time potential, but now will have the opportunity to prove that he can be a long-term answer at quarterback.
He put together a masterful college career for the Purdue Boilermakers, completing 66.7 percent of his career pass attempts for 9,219 yards, 65 touchdowns, and 30 interceptions.
Many believe that he has the potential to be an NFL starter if he develops to his full potential. He has the leadership, arm talent, and coachability to become a good player. It just has to translate to the field.
One NFL scout did not hold back on his thoughts about the Raiders’ rookie quarterback. As NFL Analysis Network shared, he believes that O’Connell has what it takes to be Las Vegas’ new franchise quarterback.
“It sounds like Aidan is going to be the new starter in Vegas. Not only do I think he’ll seize the opportunity, but with a new coaching staff I believe he’ll be their long-term franchise quarterback,” the scout said. “He’s got special potential.”
What To Expect From Aidan O’Connell As The Raiders’ Starter
First up for Aidan O’Connell will be a matchup against the New York Giants. That game is a perfect one for the young signal-caller. The Giants have been really bad this season and they also just traded away star defensive lineman Leonard Williams.
If there was a team for O’Connell to face in his first start since the major regime change in Vegas, this would be the team to ask to play.
Does O’Connell have the talent and ability to become the Raiders’ franchise quarterback? There is no question that he has the potential to do so. However, there are some areas that need major improvement.
So far this season in two games, O’Connell has completed 65.4 percent of his pass attempts for 313 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. He needs to be quicker at making decisions with the football. The arm talent hasn’t looked bad, but he could use a little work on reading the defense in order to capitalize on his arm ability.
At just 25 years of age, there is plenty of time for Aidan O’Connell to continue improving and developing. The Raiders will have to make a decision heading into the offseason though, which makes the next nine games critical to his case of remaining the starter in 2024.
Only time will tell, but there is no denying the talent and potential that O’Connell possesses. It will be interesting to see what he does with the major opportunity he is being given.