In the midst of Manziel-Mania, the rest of the league’s quarterback battles this offseason went under the radar. Among the teams holding competitions were the Oakland Raiders. On Monday afternoon, the Black and Silver named their guy. According to Fox Sports reporter Jay Glazer, rookie Derek Carr will be the opening day starter for the Raiders, when they travel to take on the New York Jets.
Derek Car was the Raiders’ second round draft pick in this year’s NFL Draft. Oakland took highly-rated linebacker Khalil Mack with their first selection.
Head coach Dennis Allen was forced to wait on the decision, after Carr failed to play in the team’s third preseason game. The former Fresno State quarterback had battled sore ribs, but came back in time for Oakland’s preseason finale against Seattle. In that game, Carr went 11 for 13 in the air, for 143 yards and three touchdowns.
Oakland’s decision certainly isn’t shocking. Matt Schaub was brought over from Houston in exchange for a sixth round selection in the 2014 draft. Schaub didn’t show poorly in training camp, but Carr was certainly the more impressive of the two. To make matters worse for the 33 year old, he has battled tendonitis in his throwing elbow for the past few weeks.
In a win-now league, Dennis Allen realizes that he needs to make some big moves in order to contend in a very difficult AFC West.
Carr will be the only rookie quarterback under center to start the NFL season, but expect teams like Jacksonville and Cleveland to give their first round signal-callers a chance sooner rather than later.