The Las Vegas Raiders spent all offseason exploring alternatives to quarterback Derek Carr. With the 2020 NFL season set to begin, it seems the organization still isn’t sold on their franchise quarterback.
Carr, who recently blasted his critics for doubting his abilities, is set to enter his seventh season in the NFL. With just one playoff appearance and winning season during that stretch, some important people in Las Vegas don’t seem to be sold on him.
Las Vegas Raiders ownership not sold on Derek Carr
After their pursuit of Tom Brady fell short in free agency, the Raiders reacted quickly by signing Marcus Mariota. The former No. 2 pick in the 2015 NFL Draft was brought in to compete with Carr in training camp.
When rumors floated around the NFL that Carr could be traded this offseason, head coach Jon Gruden shot them down and committed to his quarterback. Gruden’s belief in Carr is real, according to NFL Network’s Michael Silver, but that confidence isn’t shared by the entire organization.
“My understanding in that building is that Jon Gruden is more staunchly behind Derek Car than maybe people at the very top of the organization, like in the owners box,” Silver said, via NFL.com.
While there has been speculation about a brewing quarterback battle, that might not be the case this year. Silver noted that Carr has a firm hold on the starting gig for the 2020 season, but his job security beyond that might depend on how he fares.
Derek Carr’s stats prove he is one of most underrated NFL quarterbacks
Since joining the Raiders as a second-round pick, Carr hasn’t exactly been surrounded by a great supporting cast. Despite dealing with poor weaponry around him or a defense that failed to protect leads, the three-time Pro Bowl selection has impressed.
Heading into the 2019 season, many expected Carr to take a huge leap with the addition of Antonio Brown. While the Raiders ultimately cut the All-Pro receiver before the year began, Carr still had a great year.
He started all 16 games and helped the Raiders finish with a 7-9 record, despite playing for a team that allowed 419 points last season. Meanwhile, he racked up the stats and set career-highs in passing yards (4,054), quarterback rating (100.8), completion rate (70.4%) and posted an impressive 21-8 TD-INT ratio.
Moving to a new city, the Raiders did a lot more this offseason to help Carr. The addition of receivers Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards adds two playmakers to this offense. Meanwhile, Josh Jacobs is a breakout candidate heading into his second season.
All the pieces are in place for the Raiders to win games this year and Carr could have another record-setting season. Given he’s owed just $19.6 million next season, an affordable rate for quarterbacks, Las Vegas would be wise to keep him.