Whether or not you believe Derek Carr is the franchise quarterback for the Raiders, drafting and assembling weapons and protection around him isn’t only sound — it future proofs whomever becomes the QB if the team moves on from DC.
Giving Carr weaponry serves two purposes:
- Jon Gruden gets his definitive answer on whether or not DC is his dude at QB after given ample resources.
- The next signal caller has a surrounding cast that got a year to work together and build valuable rapport.
There’s a vocal group proclaiming on a soap box wasting resources on Carr is asinine and an exercise in futility.
So, let me understand this… Don’t waste draft picks and cap space (free agents) on surrounding Carr with viable pieces. The premise is DC isn’t the QB and the team is going to move on from him, so why waste time and resources on him that can be used in other areas of need.
Fair. I can see that point — to a certain extent.
But, like slipping a rock in a body of water, have you anticipated or prepared for how far the ripples of that would go?
Case in point: The quarterback that takes over for Carr. Is he going to be left to wither in a bone dry desert of an offense because he inherits the same group Carr broke down with? It’s not ideal to leave another signal caller like a fart in the wind.
Both Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock came out and proclaimed Carr as the Raiders’ franchise QB.
“I think Derek Carr is a franchise quarterback. I truly believe that,” Mayock said at the NFL combine. “Now, do I also believe it’s a general manager’s and head coach’s job to keep your eyes open to improve any position on the football team? Sure. But I think it’s really difficult to try to improve over a franchise quarterback like the one we have in our building.”
Do I wholeheartedly believe that? Can’t say I do. 100 percent, that is.
Just being honest.
I mean, after seeing Gruden’s Double Talk — where he says one thing and does another — exercises with Khalil Mack, Amari Cooper and others, buying completely into Chucky is a dicey proposition — at best. What I do believe wholeheartedly is if Gruden and Mayock got a solid offer for DC, he’d be sent packing — without blinking an eye.
Without that offer, however, I do see Gruden and Mayock riding this particular Carr into 2019. The following year in Las Vegas may be an entirely different matter, however.
DC supporters would love to see him return to 2016 form. If that’s the case, it’s a requisite job task Gruden and Mayock get the roster back to 2016 form.
I’m expecting coach and GM to nab more pieces in both free agency and the draft to put around Carr.
Kolton Miller and Brandon Parker arrived in last year’s draft with an eye towards protecting Carr. Stealing Antonio Brown from the Pittsburgh Steelers is a hell of a start. Adding another lineman to buoy the offensive line is a possibility. Perhaps nabbing an all-around tight end who can both catch and block is on the draft board. And, potentially, after testing the free agency market, Jared Cook returns to the fold to spearhead the tight end group again. Lot of ifs there, no? That’s the Raiders at this point.
An improved roster stoked with proper weapons completes Gruden’s and Mayock’s empirical research on DC.
Leave no excuses on the table when it it is all said and done.
Failing with a barebones support unit is one thing. Face planting with ample resources at your disposal is another.
Carr endured a lot since arriving in Oakland as a second-round draft pick in 2014. In the same vein, die-hard Raider Nation experienced exponentially worse trials and tribulations since Rich Gannon briefly held the mantle of franchise QB.
The angst is palpable. But, one way or another, here’s to hoping the emphatic answer at the QB spot arrives in 2019.