Raiders handling of Derek Carr remains entirely baffling

The Las Vegas Raiders have a short timeline to reach a decision on quarterback Derek Carr, but they have reportedly taken an unusual stance.

The Las Vegas Raiders made their stance on quarterback Derek Carr entirely well known towards the end of the season by benching him for their final two games in favor of Jarrett Stidham.

From there, it was reported that Carr would remain away from the team during those two contests against the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs. The various reports indicated that the Raiders reached that decision in order to preserve his health to trade him by a Feb. 15 deadline in which he will be guaranteed $40 million over the next two seasons.

At the end of the season, Carr released a statement to confirm his impending departure and to say farewell to the Raiders fanbase.

Yet, with Super Bowl 57 taking place on Feb. 12, the Raiders have made a head-scratching choice, to say the least.

The MMQB’s Albert Breer reported in his latest column that the Raiders have not yet given Carr permission to talk to other teams in regards to exploring a trade with just a couple of weeks remaining until that all-important deadline.

Raiders reportedly not giving Derek Carr permission to speak with other teams

“My understanding as of right now is the Raiders have not granted Carr’s camp the ability to seek a trade,” writes Breer. “And even though there are the aforementioned teams out there with needs, dealing him before the Feb. 15 deadline—when his $32.9 million base for next year and $7.5 million of his 2024 money vests as fully guaranteed—won’t be easy. And he absolutely won’t be on the Raiders’ roster past that date, so there is the idea that teams that are interested in him should just wait for Las Vegas to cut him.”

As Breer points out, with the Raiders having until Feb. 15 to make a decision regarding Carr, interested teams could opt to just wait until the organization has no choice but to release him.

Additionally, Vic Tafur of The Athletic (subscription required) mentions that Carr does have veto power over any trade and that his agent, Tim Younger, hasn’t given the team a list of teams that the quarterback would be open to being traded to.

Carr did have a bit of a down year, as compared to the 2021 campaign in which he completed 68.4 percent of his passes for 4,804 yards to help the Raiders make the playoffs. Through 15 games played in 2022, Carr threw for 3,522 yards, 24 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions while completing 60.8 percent of his passes.

There are plenty of quarterback-needy teams this offseason, with the New York Jets, Indianapolis Colts, Houston Texans, and Carolina Panthers being the most glaring. Not to mention there is the possibility the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Seattle Seahawks, and New York Giants could be in need of a quarterback if Tom Brady, Geno Smith, and Daniel Jones are to leave for another team in free agency.

The fact that the Raiders have not allowed Carr to speak with teams is perplexing. But perhaps things will change once the deadline gets closer.

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