Derek Carr Shows Franchise QB Talent in Big Win


Dec 7, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) reacts after throwing a touchdown pass against the San Francisco 49ers in the second quarter at Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Derek Carr has been up and down this season like most quarterbacks who have been brought in to a franchise in search of a new identity, but when he has been successful this season he has shown the stuff of a quarterback who could be one of the next superstars in the NFL. That was evident on Sunday afternoon at the Coliseum against the 49ers when Carr dominated the duel with Colin Kaepernick, besting the highly paid Niners quarterback throughout all four quarters in what was his most complete game at the NFL level in a big upset win to kick off the Raiders final month of the season.

Carr threw for 254 yards in the air on Sunday against the vaunted Niners defense, adding three passing touchdowns, using Marcel Reece and Mychal Rivera seven times each to put 24 points on the board in a game where the Raiders offense was clicking for four quarters for the first time this season.

With the win over the Niners, Carr now has wins over both Colin Kaepernick and Alex Smith over the past three weeks, recovering from a nightmare game in St. Louis to confirm what has been known for awhile, that Derek Carr is the franchise quarterback that this Raiders team has been waiting for since Rich Gannon retired.

While there have been games where Carr has looked like a rookie, which was expected from a second round draft pick coming out of the Mountain West, most of Carr’s performances have featured plenty of promise. Nearing 3,000 yards and 20 TD’s as a rookie, Carr’s numbers indicate a player who could be a future Top 5 passer in the league should he get the weapons he needs while improving with more experience. All things that may happen as the Raiders rebuild as Carr’s professional attitude and maturity seem to indicate that if healthy he will only get better as time goes on with his dedication to improving as a player being well documented.

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Carr has a long way to go before he has a complete franchise quarterback that is leading his team to the playoffs and beyond, but so does the rest of the roster around him as Carr has been growing with the teammates he has this season. With three more good tests to finish the season strong in Kansas City, Buffalo, and Denver it will be interesting to see if Carr can continue to wow the league over the final month of the season. If he does it may do the Raiders a world of good in free agency as a list of wide receivers hitting the open market may jump at the opportunity to pair themselves with an emerging rookie quarterback who has a real chance to bring the Raiders back into the spotlight as a key part of the rebuild in Oakland.