Derek Carr Isn’t Ready, but He’s Clearly Better for Raiders Than Matt Schaub

If Oakland Raiders head coach Dennis Allen's head-coaching career comes to an untimely end this offseason, there's no question what quote will be used in the obituary.

"We brought Matt Schaub in to be our starting quarterback," Allen told the media in a March conference call, per the team's official site. "He’s been a top 10 quarterback throughout his career."

After two preseason games, he's completed just 55 percent of his passes for just 5.4 yards per attempt, no touchdowns and an interception. Whatever spark the two-time Pro Bowl quarterback used to impart to offenses has gone out.

Meanwhile, second-round rookie Derek Carr electrified the Coliseum crowd in the second half, with obvious talent and a few big plays.

Is there a quarterback controversy brewing in Oakland?

Frankly, no. As Josh Katzenstein of the Detroit News implied on Twitter, Carr is visibly better:


The Hot Hand

Carr's talent was obvious throughout the draft evaluation cycle. As I wrote last March, NFL experts disagreed wildly on Carr, with evaluations and grades all over the map. His size, mobility, effortless release and tremendous arm strength gives him the ability to make jaw-dropping throws.

We saw that arm talent on display several times, like when he hit a wide-open Greg Little for a 38-yard bomb, taking the Raiders to the doorstep of the endzone.

However, Carr also struggled mightily with consistency and accuracy, especially in the face of a pass rush. We saw that, too, on Carr's first pass attempt: he airmailed a seam pass to a wide-open tight end, Brian Leonhardt.

Allen elected to keep starters and top contributors out much longer than the Lions' Jim Caldwell did, though, and Carr was easily able to move the ball and put up points against the Lions' second-team defense.

The inordinate number of p...

About the Author