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Should the Raiders make a play for first pick to draft Caleb Williams?

Las Vegas just hired Williams’ QB coach at USC as the new offensive coordinator. Might the Raiders make a big play for the No. 1 pick? We break it down.

The former Arizona Cardinals head coach and now USC Trojans assistant coach Kliff Kingsbury talks to quarterback Caleb Williams (13) during the pregame warmup before playing the Arizona State Sun Devils at Mountain America Stadium in Tempe on Sept. 23, 2023. Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Las Vegas Raiders are making a big play, bringing in Kliff Kingsbury to be the offensive coordinator under new head coach Antonio Pierce. It’s a hiring that could work wonders or come back to haunt the Raiders down the road. Kingsbury comes over after spending the 2023 season as QB coach of the USC Trojans and QB Caleb Williams, who is expected to be the No. 1 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. That pick is held by the Chicago Bears, who could look to move the pick and Williams if a top-tier deal comes along. It just so happens the Raiders could use a QB.

Does this mean the Raiders could make a play to move up for the No. 1 pick to select the Heisman Trophy winner? Let’s take a look.

The Raiders hold the No. 13 pick in the 2024 draft. Las Vegas can dump some salary and give back a player or two along with a package of multiple first-round picks to try and make a push for Williams. Jimmy Garoppolo isn’t the answer and likely gets cut before the 2024 NFL season. Aidan O’Connell you can at least wait and see if he develops into a strong backup. Sure, this could work out, right?

The issue is the Raiders’ can’t really offer a great package for the No. 1 pick and we’d expect a lot of teams to be interested. The Bears will take the best offer and that may not come from Las Vegas. Unless the Raiders do something a little crazy. That might be including either WR Davante Adams or RB Zamir White, their top-2 assets on offense. Ideally, you get Williams to pair with Adams and go dominate. But Williams should be viewed as a long-term play and that tops keeping Adams and/or White. In fact, you give up pretty much anyone but Maxx Crosby in a deal for Williams.

What about Justin Fields?

That’s an interesting idea. Fields played well this season and the Bears finished strong. Chicago could opt to continue with Fields as the starter and trade the first pick. Or Chicago drafts Williams and deals Fields. If Fields is made available, expect the Raiders to give the Bears a call. Fields behind a strong defense with some legit weapons like Adams and Jakobi Meyers, plus Kingsbury, could be very dangerous. Kingsbury was able to get Kyler Murray that big contract.

Also, a deal for Fields should cost the Raiders much less than one for the pick. It could take some late-round picks, to be honest. Chicago doesn’t have much leverage if teams find out the Bears want Caleb. That feels like a better route than going all-in on Williams but both scenarios get you a starting QB (maybe a franchise one).