Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr recently became the highest paid NFL player. Believe it or not, Carr actually took less money up front so that his teammates, including newly paid guard Gabe Jackson, could receive new deals.
Though, it has been speculated that Carr may have accepted a more backloaded deal for other reasons. The main one being to avoid the heavier taxes he would pay as a California resident. When Carr eventually relocates to Nevada, he won’t have to pay state income taxes.
No matter what public opinions are swirling about, Carr reiterated that Nevada tax laws had little to do with the structure of his contract.
“I mean in a very small sense of it, yes,” Carr said, during an interview with The Dan Patrick Show (h/t Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.) “I didn’t really care about getting all the cash in my hands right now. I trust [G.M.] Reggie [McKenzie] and when he told me . . . they love me and they want me here forever, so I said if that’s the case . . . let’s try and push some of that back, obviously, you know, for tax reasons and those things but also, more importantly, the No. 1 reason why I wanted to do that is because we have guys coming up that we needed to get signed, and I wanted to help the team do that. So getting guys like Gabe Jackson, getting guys like Khalil [Mack], you know, Amari [Cooper is] gonna come up at some point. I wanted to make sure we could keep our team together. And that’s the No. 1 reason we did it is I did not want to hurt my team and have some of my best friends leave and go play somewhere else.”
There is little reason to doubt Carr. He is, without a doubt, one of the most humble, sincere players in the league. He waited patiently while a long-term deal was worked out. If no deal was struck, Carr’s plan was to play out the 2017 season on his meager rookie salary. He did not want money issues to become a distraction.
Eventually, Carr and the Raiders will play at their new stadium in Las Vegas, which is projected to be ready for the 2020 season.
For now, Carr and the Raiders are fully committed to building on last season’s success. We do not anticipate money, contracts and tax laws getting in the way of Carr’s focus this year, or three years for now.
It is refreshing that he set the record straight, and very crystal clear how much Carr loves and supports his team.