PFF Analyst Shares Truth About Raiders QB Derek Carr

derek carr

Getty Las Vegas Raiders QB Derek Carr.

Derek Carr is set to be one of the most talked-about names in the NFL offseason. He’s due for a contract extension from the Las Vegas Raiders but could also be a popular player for quarterback-needy teams to consider trading for. Unless the Raiders give him a contract in the near future, he’s going to be involved in trade rumors.

Carr has gotten a bad rap from a segment of the fan base due to the fact that he’s only had two winning seasons since getting drafted in 2014. He’s also never won a playoff game. He led the Raiders to the playoffs last season and had a chance to beat the Cincinnati Bengals, but threw an interception in the red zone late in the fourth quarter that sealed the loss. However, Carr’s work was still impressive in 2021. There are plenty of teams that would be happy to give him a big contract if the Raiders don’t. Carr isn’t a top-five quarterback in the NFL but he might not be as far away from that status as many think.

Ben Linsey of Pro Football Focus believes that Carr’s status in the NFL quarterback rankings is held back by his supporting cast:

Carr began the season playing some of the best football of his career. He ranked among the top three quarterbacks in PFF grade through six weeks and led the league in total big-time throws for the majority of the year. Unfortunately, his play naturally suffered a drop-off as the Raiders unraveled around him. With Henry Ruggs III in the offense, Carr was one of the league’s most aggressive downfield passers, but when that was no longer an option, the passing game changed completely — for the worse. Losing Darren Waller, the team’s best pass-catcher, only made matters worse. Carr topped 3.0 Wins Above Replacement (PFF WAR) for the first time since 2016 and showed that he could be a top-10 quarterback in the NFL in the right environment. With a new regime coming in, he likely put himself in line for a big-money extension in the offseason.

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Are Raiders Holding Carr Back?

As Linsey noted, Carr was looking like an MVP candidate before he lost Ruggs. Losing Waller to injury certainly didn’t help things. Add in the fact that the Raiders had one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL and the team certainly didn’t do him a ton of favors. Outside of throwing for 4,804 passing yards last season, his numbers weren’t overly impressive. He threw 23 touchdowns to a career-high 14 interceptions.

However, the Raiders don’t even sniff the playoffs in 2021 without him. It’s not just his ability on the field but his ability as a leader helped keep the team afloat. While many quarterbacks who have had to deal with inept franchises try to leave dodge, Carr has remained loyal. Has he always been perfect? No, but he’s easily the best quarterback the team has had since Rich Gannon retired in 2004. Despite what some fans think, it’s not easy to find a top-10 quarterback.

Carr Will Likely Get Extension

If teams like the Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers or Washington Commanders call the Raiders with a big offer for Carr, that should only reaffirm to new head coach Josh McDaniels that he has the right guy. Draft picks aren’t worth a lot to a team that doesn’t have the right quarterback.

Anything can happen this offseason but it will likely end with Carr getting an extension. Is a good fit for what McDaniels wants to do on offense and can help keep the team together through another regime change.

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