Over the last few seasons, Derek Carr has changed the public perception about him around the NFL. He was once thought of as a below-average quarterback who never was aggressive enough to lead an elite offense. And to be fair, that was the case, especially with how he played during the 2018 season.
But over the last two years, Carr has played some really good football. He has now posted back-to-back seasons with a passer rating over 100 and his adjusted yards per attempt reached 8.0 for the first time in his career in 2019.
He’s clearly a good quarterback, but where does he rank among the NFL’s best heading into the new season? Well, that depends on who you ask.
In a recent article by Maurice Moton of Bleacher Report, he ranked all 32 starting quarterbacks entering the 2021 season. Not surprisingly, Carr did finish inside of the top half of the league, coming in at No. 13. Here is just a small snippet of Moton’s thoughts
“Carr doesn’t have a year with gaudy passing numbers across multiple categories, but like Kirk Cousins, he’s one of the league’s most efficient quarterbacks, completing at least 67.3 percent of his passes in each of the last three seasons.
Coming off one of his best campaigns in which he threw for a career-high 4,103 yards and ranked 11th in QBR (71.0), the 30-year-old may have more room for growth under Gruden.”
Comparing Carr to Cousins feels right as both aren’t high-volume passers, but are extremely efficient. Neither probably are top-10 quarterbacks, but they aren’t far behind. The Raiders have shown the can win with Carr, but now it’s up to Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock to build a roster around him that can compete.
Is 2021 the year the Raiders finally help out Carr by providing him at least an average defense? Or can it be the year that playmaker at wide receiver breaks out, such as Henry Ruggs or Bryan Edwards? That remains to be seen, but the Raiders should feel good about their quarterback situation after back-to-back strong seasons by Derek Carr.