Las Vegas Raiders: 3 Reasons for hope for the rest of 2021
No. 2: Derek Carr’s playbook mastery
Over the past four seasons, Derek Carr has dedicated himself to mastering the Jon Gruden West Coast offense. Carr has proven this on the field, both with his continued improvement each year under Gruden, as well as his impressive manipulation of the playbook at the line of scrimmage.
Now, with Gruden gone, the offense will be led by offensive coordinator Greg Olsen and, to a greater extent, Derek Carr. Carr has shown he is more comfortable in this offense than ever, as he was leading the NFL in passing yards prior to the dismal performance by the entire team on Sunday.
This will be Carr’s true chance to take over the team and prove himself as a winner. The play calling duties will presumably fall on Olsen, but Carr will be the one approving the final call before the ball is snapped.
The conservative nature that the offense displays to begin games has to go, and Carr, now with a full handle of the reins, has a chance to make sure that it does. Derek Carr needs to prove that, with a system he knows like the back of his hand, he can lead this offense to success and propel a Las Vegas team, with an improved defense, to a winning season. Raiders fans should feel optimistic that he can.
If he is unable to do so, it may be hard convincing a new head coach in 2022 that Carr is the guy going forward.