The Oakland Raiders have announced through their website that Matt Leinart has signed with the club. The Heisman Trophy winner will join Carson Palmer (also a Heisman Trophy winner) in a role that he is very familiar with as Pamler’s back up.
Adam Schefter had announced last week that Leinart’s signing was imminent, and was also the first to announce the actual signing earlier today via Twitter. Neither Schefter’s tweets, nor the Raider’s eventual confirmation of the signing came as a big surprise to anybody in and around the football world. The Raider’s current offensive coordinator coached Leinart while they were both employed by the Houston Texans just a year ago.
The Cardinals had big plans for Leinart when they drafted him in the first round (10th overall) in the 2006 NFL draft. Unfortunately, he never lived up to those expectations, and fortunately for the Cards, they had a pretty decent backup in Kurt Warner. The soon to be 29-year old quarterback from my hometown of Santa Ana, CA has compiled a less than stellar stat line throughout his 5 year career. He has played in a total of 31 games, he has completed 350 of 608 pass attempts for a 57.6 average for a grand total of 3,950 yards. You take his total of 15 touchdowns and 20 interceptions along with that, and you come up with a lifetime 71.6 QB rating.
Leinart will be asked to back up Carson Palmer, leapfrogging Palmer’s current backup Terrelle Pryor. It seems Denis Allen isn’t quite comfortable enough to allow Pryor to be one snap away from being the team’s starter. There has been no announcement on the terms of the deal, but look for a possible 1-2 year contract, giving the Raiders enough time to properly evaluate Pryor and see where, and if, he fits in the team’s plans for the future at the quarterback position.