Halfway through the 2019 season, it looked like the Raiders could be headed to the playoffs and Derek Carr was set to be the starter at quarterback for the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, the team struggled down the stretch, missed the playoffs and Carr didn’t play well enough to silence critics. The offseason has already been filled with rumors that the team plans to replace him at some point.
While many on the outside believe that Carr will lose the job eventually, his teammates often sing his praise. Jalen Richard has played with the quarterback throughout his entire career and he defended Carr against his critics.
“I don’t think people understand how much Gruden truly asks of his quarterback … With all the pressures and everything, you see DC go out there and numbers continue to increase,” Richard said on the Keeping it 300 podcast. “You saw what he did in his second year in Gruden’s offense. He was more [calm], understood situations better and continues to grow. Man, we’re behind him 100% and everybody on [the Raiders] believes he can get it done.”
Richard’s comments certainly cut against the idea that his teammates don’t have confidence in him. Carr has done a lot for the team and players have taken notice of that.
Richard Calls Carr ‘Crazy Accurate’
Derek Carr’s numbers haven’t really lit up the stat sheet over the last three seasons, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t put up good ones. He throws for plenty of yards and doesn’t throw a lot of interceptions. What sets Carr apart from other quarterbacks is his ridiculous accuracy. Currently, he’s 15th all-time in completion percentage and was second behind Drew Brees in 2019. Richard had some strong comments about how accurate Carr is.
“DC, man, I’ve never seen nobody be able to put the ball where they want to put it,” Richard said. “Like, he’s crazy accurate. He’s got his interceptions down. I think this year, you guys are going to see an even better DC. Every year he’s been progressing regardless of y’all see at the team.”
Accuray has never been a problem for Carr. His biggest weakness has been pushing the ball down the field and making plays with his feet. It seems like both should be a strength for him as he has a cannon for an arm and runs an impressive 40-yard dash. He was able to put everything together in 2016 but hasn’t necessarily reached that same level. It sounds like Richard thinks that the quarterback will be able to put everything back together in 2020.
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Will Raiders Draft a QB?
Carr may have survived quarterback rumors based around free agents, but he now has to survive the draft. The Raiders have been linked to Jordan Love, Justin Herbert and Jalen Hurts. None of them would likely be viable options to start for the team this season – especially Hurts or Love.
Thanks to his time at ESPN, everybody thinks that Jon Gruden is obsessed with adding quarterbacks. However, he’s never drafted a quarterback in the first-round throughout his entire career. Despite many mock drafts predicting the Raiders to take a quarterback, it’s highly unlikely to happen.