According to an NFL insider, Darren Waller was ‘upset’ with Las Vegas Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels.
Waller is one of the best tight ends in the NFL. Since 2019, he has the third-most receiving yards among tight ends (3,394), trailing only Travis Kelce and Mark Andrews.
It is a crushing loss for the Raiders’ offense. Newly acquired quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has heavily targeted tight ends throughout his career. Last season, he was the 49ers’ starter from Week 3 to Week 12. During that span, the 49ers ranked ninth in the league in tight end targets per game (5.7). So, Waller is projected to be the perfect target for the veteran quarterback.
Furthermore, a third-round pick was an underwhelming return for a player of Waller’s caliber.
So, why did the Raiders not hold onto him?
Raiders: Darren Waller was upset with Josh McDaniels
Following the trade, The Athletic’s Vic Tafur reported some interesting news.
Waller and Las Vegas Aces guard Kelsey Plum were recently married. The wedding was held on March 4th. However, Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels leaked the news of the wedding prior to the couple’s announcement. This led Waller to be “upset” with McDaniels, according to Tafur:
The trade comes 10 days after Darren Waller’s wedding to Aces guard Kelsey Plum. The timing is only interesting because Josh McDaniels accidentally leaked the news of his wedding to reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine. Waller was upset with McDaniels when the Las Vegas Review-Journal posted a story announcing the wedding was scheduled later in the week. The couple had not publicly announced their plans to get married.
It is not confirmed that the incident was directly related to Waller’s departure, but the timing of the report and the incident are noteworthy.