Linebacker Brandon Marshall only signed a one-year deal with the Raiders this offseason, but 2020 was part of the sales pitch that got him to join the club.
Marshall grew up in Las Vegas and stayed in Nevada to play college football, which the Raiders used to their advantage when it came time to talk about a contract. The Raiders are set to begin playing their home games in Vegas next year.
“They said they only had a one-year deal for me, but they really sold me on Vegas,” Marshall said, via Nicki Jhabvala of TheAthletic.com. “They said, ‘Look, we want you to help us plant the flag in Las Vegas. We feel like you’re a leader, and we need leaders on the defense, we need alphas on the defense.’ That’s what Jon Gruden said, so that kind of made me feel good. It’s funny because when I went there, they showed me the whole model of the Vegas stadium. So I was like, ‘OK, this is their selling point for me.’ I’m not sure about everybody else, but for me, they knew, ‘Let’s talk to Brandon about Vegas.’ And it worked.”
The prospect of playing well enough to earn another contract and move back to his hometown may have played a role for Marshall, but he admitted there weren’t a lot of other options available to him. Marshall said the Chargers, Cardinals and Jets showed early interest in his services early in free agency, but they pulled back as the Raiders were pressing forward.