Once again, there was an offseason full of rumors that the Las Vegas Raiders were going to move on from quarterback Derek Carr and once again, they turned out to be untrue. The only thing that Carr can do to quiet the rumors is to win and play well. He’s doing that right now and if he keeps up the pace, the rumors should go away for a while.
Carr has the fifth-best quarterback rating in the NFL and is also fifth in completion percentage. He’s thrown for 2,002 yards and 16 touchdowns with only two interceptions through eight games. Those are the type of numbers you expect from a top-10 quarterback.
While it’s hard to argue against the fact that Carr has been impressive this year, he still has detractors. Steve Palazzolo of Pro Football Focus took a shot at Carr by saying that luck has a lot to do with his success.
there's a lot of luck on Carr's side so far. Look at yesterday, throw right to a dropping DLineman for dropped INT. Fumble on a scramble.
INT luck, low drop rate both contributing
— Steve Palazzolo (@PFF_Steve) November 2, 2020
Every quarterback in the NFL gets luck here or there. Even if you added another three interceptions to Carr’s total for the year so far, he’d still be on pace to only throw 10, which isn’t that bad. Plus, he’s never been a guy to throw a lot of interceptions so to peg luck as the reason those numbers are low is just lazy. Also, Palazzolo mentioned a low drop-rate as a reason he’s done well. That literally makes no sense as a criticism. A drop happens when a quarterback throws a catchable ball that they simply drop. A drop is almost never at the fault of the quarterback.
By most accounts, Carr seems like one of the more wholesome guys in the NFL but for whatever reason, members of the media like to target him.
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Carr in Elite Company This Season
While Palazzolo isn’t that impressed with Carr, the website he works for has dropped some stats that put the quarterback in rare company. According to PFF, Carr is only one of two quarterbacks who have not thrown in interception when they’re kept clean.
Only two QBs have 0 INTs when kept clean this season:
🔹 Patrick Mahomes
🔹 Derek Carr pic.twitter.com/K5ZzGs2tO2
— PFF (@PFF) November 11, 2020
Carr also does well when he’s under pressure. It appears he’s going to have doubters no matter what he does but if he keeps playing at a high level while leading the Raiders to the playoffs, he should at least get some consideration for league MVP.
Carr Made Best Incompletion of Week 9
Ironically, Palazzolo went on to praise Carr a week later and said that he made the best incompletion of Week 9 on a throw to Henry Ruggs.
— Steve Palazzolo (@PFF_Steve) November 10, 2020
It was an absolutely mind-blowing throw from Carr but Ruggs wasn’t able to keep his feet in bounds. That would’ve been a highlight all around the NFL on Sunday had Ruggs kept his feet in. Carr has gotten the reputation of a guy who doesn’t like to throw deep. Despite that fact, he’s got a big arm and can be insanely accurate down the field. Now that he has a couple of deep threats, he’s taking a lot more shots.