In his sixth-season as the starting quarterback for the Oakland Raiders, Derek Carr started all 16 games, leading to career-highs in numerous categories.
The Oakland Raiders wrapped up their Bay Area Era with another losing season, as they squandered a 6-4 start, losing five of their last six games. For quarterback Derek Carr, the losses continue to pile up, but individually, he had a pretty solid 2019 campaign, setting multiple career-highs, and having some memorable moments.
Of course, a quarterback is mostly graded on wins and losses, and with only one winning season since taking over as the starter in 2014, Carr has to start putting more in the win column. As the team heads to their new digs in Las Vegas, the expectation is that this roster is building towards being a perennial playoff contender, and he has to prove he is the right guy to steer the ship.
With that said, let us take a look at his 2019 campaign, where the threw for a career-high 4,054 yards, and broke Ken Stabler‘s Raiders all-time passing mark. In addition, he finished behind only Drew Brees in terms of completion percentage with a mark of 70.4, and was one of the better third down quarterbacks in the league.
Carr was able to accomplish all of this without the use of a true WR1, as the team lost Antonio Brown before the season started, and Tyrell Williams, who stepped in at the top spot, was dealing with an injury for most of the season. Still, Carr utilized tight end Darren Waller perfectly, as the big man hauled in 90 passes, becoming one of the more elite tight ends in the league.
If we can take a step back and just look at Carr’s season from a statistical perspective, he did great, throwing 21 touchdowns against only eight interceptions. However, fans will point to specific plays during the team’s losses, and wonder if they can trust him moving forward.
Jon Gruden’s offensive system is incredibly hard to digest, and Carr has done a great job learning it, and mastering it over the last two seasons. This offseason, the team plans to go out and get him some help at wide receiver as per general manager Mike Mayock, and at only 28-years old, there should still be a lot of good football left in him.
Heading into 2020, all signs point to Carr once again being the starter, as general manager Mike Mayock raved about his advancement in Year 2 of Gruden’s system. He has work to do in terms of taking chances, and making plays with his legs, but he is a very solid NFL quarterback, and the Raiders have other areas to improve outside of the quarterback spot heading into Vegas.