As if this season could get any worse for the Las Vegas Raiders. In the first quarter of the game against the Los Angeles Chargers, Derek Carr appeared to hurt his groin while rolling out. He immediately headed to the Raiders locker room.
There’s not a lot known about his injury just yet but the team did offer an update. They revealed that he is questionable to return.
That doesn’t tell us too much but it does mean there’s a chance he returns to the game. The injury didn’t look great so it’s hard to speculate until anything is officially announced. Carr has been in the midst of one of his best seasons as a pro and losing him for any amount of time would kill any chances the Raiders have at making the playoffs.
UPDATE: The Raiders have ruled Carr out for the rest of the game.
UPDATE #2: Jon Gruden said after the game that he doesn’t believe that Carr suffered a tear but he did say the injury was significant.
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Marcus Mariota’s Time to Shine
With Carr out, it’s now time for Marcus Mariota to prove that he worth all the money the Raiders gave him. He’s been inactive for most of the season as he worked through injury but has recently become Carr’s backup. The last time he was playing, he was benched by the Tennessee Titans in favor of Ryan Tannehill.
Despite being a top draft pick, the Titans didn’t try to bring him back this past offseason. The decision for the Raiders to sign him definitely turned some heads and some speculated he could take Carr’s job. After a poor training camp and getting put on injured reserve, Mariota was buried on the depth chart. He worked his way back and will now get a chance to show that he can still play.
He certainly got off to a good start.
What Happens if Carr Misses Time?
The last thing the Raiders need right now is quarterback issues. They just fired their defensive coordinator and are barely hanging on in the playoff race. Whether or not Mariota comes in and looks good, it’s hard to win a lot of games with a backup quarterback.
However, Mariota knows all too well that a backup quarterback can come in and give a struggling team a spark. It’s exactly what happened with Tannehill in Tennessee last season. Carr has done enough this season to prove that he deserves to be the starting quarterback. Even with the Raiders’ recent struggles, he’s been playing at a high level. If Mariota comes in and plays well but Carr is healthy, he likely won’t lose his starting job. That said, Mariota can do a lot to help his chances at becoming a starter if he pays well, whether that be in Las Vegas or elsewhere.
The Raiders took some heat for paying Mariota with no intentions of playing him but it’s times like these that make it look like a smart move. The team is fortunate to have a strong backup right now.