Schlereth: Derek Carr, Not Jack Del, Changed The Culture In Oakland
The Raiders are 19-13 with Jack Del Rio as head coach and months before Derek Carr’s record-breaking contract extension, it was Del Rio who signed a new long-term deal with the Raiders.
Undoubtedly, the Raiders resurgence coincided with Del Rio’s arrival, but former Bronco and current Denver radio host Mark Schlereth says it was Carr, not Del Rio, that changed the culture in Oakland.
“Every coach that has come in there has said the number one priority is changing the culture,” Schlereth said Wednesday on his The Stinkin’ Truth podcast. “Jack Del Rio is no different. Was it Jack Del Rio who changed the culture? No. You know who it was? Derek Carr changed the culture. As soon as [Carr] got hurt last year, the Raiders deflated. You could see that they had no chance.”
To Schlereth’s point, Carr missed just over 9 quarters of the season in 2016. The Raiders were outscored 74-20 in what amounted to be a little more than two full games.
“You’re paying him not only for his talent which is immense, your really paying him because he is the guy who set the tone,” Schlereth said of Carr’s new contract. “He is the guy who has established the culture and he is one of those guys that you want on your side. Derek Carr is 1. he’s salt of the earth, 2. he’s intelligent enough to have learned from his brother’s mistakes and his brother’s trials and tribulations. That to me makes him intelligent. Good players learn from their mistakes. Great players learn from the mistakes of others. He’s a great player.”
As many have said in the past (Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo being one), “the best-coached teams are player-coached teams.”
Credit to Del Rio for creating an environment where his 26 year-old quarterback is encouraged to lead.
Next order of business for the head coach?
Change the culture of his defense.