HENDERSON, Nev. — Two weeks and a day after being benched by the Las Vegas Raiders, quarterback Derek Carr broke his silence and bade farewell to the staff’s followers in an announcement on social media Thursday.
Carr had been the Raiders’ beginning quarterback since being chosen within the second spherical of the 2014 NFL draft.
“It breaks my heart I didn’t get an opportunity to say goodbye in person,” Carr wrote, regardless of staying away from the staff for its ultimate two video games in a mutual determination to not turn into a distraction. “We certainly have been on a roller coaster in our 9 years together. From the bottom of my heart, I am so grateful and appreciative of the years of support you gave to my family and me. We had our share of both heart breaking moments and thrilling game winning drives, and it always felt like you were there next to me.
“It is particularly laborious to say goodbye as a result of I can truthfully say that I gave you every thing I had, each single day, in season, and within the off season. It definitely wasn’t good, however I hope that I used to be in a position to depart you with various nice reminiscences as Raider followers.”
Carr, who signed a five-year, $125 million contract extension with the Raiders in 2017 after which a three-year, $121.5 million extension final spring, stated in 2021 he would “most likely stop soccer if I needed to play for someone else. I’m a Raider for my complete life. I’ll root for one staff for the remainder of my life — it is the Raiders. So I simply really feel that so robust in my coronary heart I do not want an ideal state of affairs … to make issues proper.
“I’d rather go down with the ship, you know what I’m saying, if I have to.”
In his newest assertion, Carr acknowledged these emotions however stated he appeared ahead to taking part in for an additional NFL staff.
“I meant that,” he wrote, “but I never envisioned it ending this way. That fire burning inside of me to win a championship still rages.”
Carr’s most up-to-date extension included the proper for the Raiders to chop him inside three days of the Tremendous Bowl for a comparatively minor $5.625 salary-cap hit and gave the quarterback a no-trade clause.
Thursday’s assertion may very well be seen as taking away the Raiders’ leverage in a commerce. Carr, whose contract ensures him $40 million if he’s nonetheless with Las Vegas or agrees to a commerce earlier than Feb. 15, might merely look forward to the Raiders to launch him and hit the open market, with Las Vegas getting nothing in return.
Trades can’t turn into official till March 15. So if the Raiders do discover a commerce associate for Carr, not solely would the quarterback need to conform to the vacation spot, the Raiders would additionally need to belief that the opposite staff wouldn’t again out. So whereas Carr would possibly discover a sturdy marketplace for his companies, his commerce worth to the Raiders won’t be as excessive because it as soon as was.
Earlier this week, first-year coach Josh McDaniels stated a dialog with Carr was within the offing.
“Again, we’ve had a great relationship,” McDaniels stated. “He’s done a lot of great things, and anything that’s said otherwise is incorrect. So we’ll look forward to that, and like I said, there will be some time between now and then.”
Carr, who turns 32 on March 28, stayed away from the staff as Jarrett Stidham began the Raiders’ ultimate two video games: an extra time loss to the San Francisco 49ers, the NFC’s No. 2 seed, and a defeat by the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs, the AFC’s No. 1 seed.
The Raiders completed 6-11, and Carr completed with 3,522 passing yards, 24 touchdowns and 14 interceptions in 15 video games. He additionally had the bottom passer ranking (86.3) and lowest completion proportion (60.8%) since his rookie season. His 2.8% interception proportion was additionally a profession excessive.
Carr owns Raiders franchise profession information for passing yards (35,222), landing passes (217), sacks (264), fourth-quarter comebacks (28), game-winning drives (33) and begins by a quarterback (142), whereas throwing 99 interceptions, the third-most in franchise historical past. His profession document, although, is 63-79, and he appeared in a single playoff sport, shedding within the wild-card spherical to the Cincinnati Bengals 26-19 final season after throwing a last-minute interception shy of the objective line.