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Raiders postpone Jimmy Garoppolo news conference

Updated March 16, 2023 - 6:40 pm

The Raiders were supposed to introduce new quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the media Thursday.

But it never happened.

About 2½ hours after the news conference was to begin, a Raiders spokesman announced that it was being pushed to Friday.

The spokesman did not give a reason for the delay, other than to indicate some final touches were being taken care of. He did not indicate whether they were related to the contract Garoppolo agreed to this week or the physical that players typically take before signing with a new team.

When asked to shed any further light on the situation, the spokesman declined.

By late Thursday afternoon, though, a person with knowledge of the situation indicated “everything should be fine” and that an update could occur Friday morning.

Nevertheless, it was a surprising and unusual turn in what was supposed to be a celebratory day to introduce the Raiders’ newest quarterback, who was at the team’s Henderson facility.

And it also raised plenty of questions.

Garoppolo has a long history of injuries and is coming off a season in which he missed the final eight games, including three in the playoffs, after he broke his foot against the Miami Dolphins in December. The injury didn’t require surgery, but Garoppolo did have shoulder surgery last offseason.

In free agency, it’s typical for players to agree to terms before the official date that they can sign the contract. In those cases, the player takes a physical at the club’s facility and, provided he passes, then signs the contract.

If there is an issue with the physical, it obviously can change things. In some cases, it nullifies the agreement.

Such was the case in 2014 when the Raiders came to terms with Rams offensive lineman Rodger Saffold, only for Saffold to fail his physical. The Raiders nullified the deal, and Saffold ended up returning to the Rams.

However, sometimes all that is required is a second opinion to resolve the situation.

Aside from any concerns with the physical, one other factor could be the language in the contract. In those cases, there is sometimes a delay as the club and the representative of the player iron out any disagreeable terms.

If it’s the contract rather than the physical, the Raiders and Garoppolo can conceivably resolve the differences.

The Raiders, needing a quarterback after releasing longtime starter Derek Carr in February, and Garoppolo agreed on Monday to a three-year, $67 million deal with $45 million in guarantees. But as is sometimes the case in these situations, the agreement was in parameters rather than an actual written contract.

The fact that the Raiders delayed the news conference rather than canceled it could be an indication it’s more contract- than health-related.

But short of any official word, the speculation was rampant.

In other words, it was quite the confusing day.

Contacts Vincent Bonsignore at vbonsignore@reviewjournal.com. Follow @VinnyBonsignore on Twitter.

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