Oakland Raiders Build Draft for Derek Carr Help in 2015

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

The Oakland Raiders identified Derek Carr as their franchise quarterback last year. He handled himself well as one of the most pressured quarterbacks in the NFL, only getting sacked 10 percent of the times he was pressured. His brother David (Carr) took 76 sacks as a rookie so he trained Derek to check the ball down under pressure. Something that paid dividends as analysts quickly learned that even with an offensive line that was in the bottom half of the league in terms of talent that the rookie would be able to make things happen in the pocket.

But it wasn’t just pressure that made Carr have to check the ball down, it was a lack of open receivers down. Rod Streater, the team’s best receiver was out for the season early and there was no one to get open consistently for him. His 21 touchdown to 12 interception ratio is one of the best ever by a rookie but his quarterback rating was held down by his 5.4 yards per attempt.

He had to throw short a lot but got no help there because he didn’t have a receiver that averaged over three yards after the catch. So those of us that wanted the Raiders to use their No. 4 overall pick on defensive lineman Leonard Williams should be glad they took receiver Amari Cooper.

When you have a quarterback like Carr, you must prioritize getting him weapons and protecting him. Otherwise, you risk of ruining him for good and you have to look for another quarterback. So this offseason, the Raiders went to work on getting Carr what he needs to succeed.

With left guard and tackle solidified, they moved right guard Austin Howard back to his natural position of right tackle. Then they brought in center Rodney Hudson and drafted guard Jon Feliciano and his protection is set. The Raiders have Streater coming back in the 2015 and they also got Michael Crabtree via free agency but that isn’t enough.

So general manager Reggie McKenzie got him some weapons at the 2015 NFL Draft.

Next: Amari Cooper