Derek Carr stats

Fumbles, Among Other Stats, Do Not Warrant An Extension For Derek Carr

Las Vegas Raiders fans and critics alike have been debating with regard to Derek Carr non-stop since a rough 2017 season. Despite having an MVP-caliber season in 2016, the debate should come to a stop after 2022. Here’s why.

Derek Carr has been with the Raiders since he was drafted in the second round of 2014. Since then, he has produced a record of 50–77, throwing for 31,700 yards and 193 touchdowns. Carr has led the Raiders to the playoffs twice, only playing in one wild card game, which was a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals last January.

Derek Carr’s stats, which include several new Raiders franchise records, appear to be impressive, and they are, but they also come with 85 interceptions and 76 fumbles. Carr leads the league in career fumbles, a stat he is not proud of.

Does it all fall on Carr’s shoulders?

Carr has definitely dealt with more adversity than the other 31 quarterbacks in the NFL. Carr has had five head coaches in eight seasons and is about to begin his ninth season with his sixth one, ex-New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. No. 4 has had a rotating system of offensive players, an inconsistent o-line, and underperforming (or criminal) first-round draft selections. Oh, and the Raiders’ defense has been historically mediocre in Carr’s career. Several changes that the team is clamoring for in support of Carr include an elite receiver, for once, and an improved offensive line.

Now the point that I’m trying to get to is that if the front office does indeed fulfill Carr’s wishes and gives him the pieces he requires, this season will be his most important one. He has the chance to show the league what they have been yearning for, and he can effectively silence the doubters. However, there is a flip side to this.

Derek Carr stats: what about the turnovers?

Two playoff appearances, including only one that Carr was physically able to play in, is unacceptable. Push the adversity aside and the rotating cycle of coaches; that is not enough to satisfy the hunger of his fanbase. Time is certainly running out on his position as the leader of the Raiders.

One of the reasons he is staying put for the 2022 season is his contract situation, as well as the mediocre quarterbacks available in this year’s draft and free agency market. Carr did play at a high level this season, but as mentioned earlier, it also came with a high level of turnovers; 14 interceptions and 14 fumbles. Nevertheless, ESPN is projecting that the Raiders will indeed offer an extension this offseason.

The only excuse I would give Carr for being extended past the 2022 season is if new general manager Dave Ziegler does not address the needs of the team and/or does not draft correctly. As long as Carr gets the players he needs and does well, he should be the main face of the team for the rest of the season and for years to come.

However, if the turnovers persist and the team misses the playoffs, the Raiders should look elsewhere. Perhaps the Silver and Black can take a page out of the Los Angeles Rams’ book. In other words, maybe trade valuable draft capital for an established signal-caller.

While that scenario can be revisited at the end of the 2022 season, in my opinion, and coming from a Carr fan, if the Raiders do not make the playoffs in 2022, it is time to move on.

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*Top Photo: Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

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