Looking Back, Derek Carr Once Had Even More Leverage (And Reason) To Hold Out Than Khalil Mack

It’s been a long few months keeping tabs on Khalil Mack’s holdout. No one expected things to end the way they did, but today that bitter water is just a little farther under the bridge.

With Mack now shipped off to Chicago, it’s worth looking back to just over a year ago when Derek Carr was in a similar situation with his own contract extension.

At the time, Carr was entering the final year of his rookie deal (2nd rounders don’t have a 5th-year option) that was worth just over $5 million and he was due to earn less than a million in his final year. In terms of financial security, Carr had as much to lose as Mack by returning without a new deal and Khalil’s rookie deal had already paid him more than $18 million – more than four times what Carr had earned as of last summer.

In terms of leverage, Carr had it coming out of his ears. Not only was he the face of the franchise, but he was also coming off a season where he orchestrated seven game-winning drives and finished tied for third in the league’s MVP vote. What’s more, the Raiders were unfortunate enough to see what life would be like without Carr in the two games following his ankle injury and it was as pleasurable as a Sunday afternoon root canal.

Had he threatened to holdout, the Raiders would have had no choice but to hand Carr a blank check. Sure, he ended up signing a record deal, but Carr could have easily squeezed more from the Raiders.

The deal was also structured to give the team the flexibility to add another significant contract.

But instead of a holdout, Carr gave the Raiders a different kind of deadline. If they didn’t decide to give him a new deal by training camp, he wasn’t going to negotiate during the season because he didn’t want to be a distraction. Another way of looking at it… without a new deal before the season, Carr wasn’t willing to compromise the team for his own financial security.

Looking back, if the Raiders had waited on Carr’s deal and he had suffered an injury similar to Teddy Bridgewater’s, Carr could have missed out on a fortune.

Just something to think about.

Holding out may have been the best option for Khalil Mack, but it wasn’t his only option. Carr proved that much a year ago.

twitter: @raidersbeat


10 thoughts on “Looking Back, Derek Carr Once Had Even More Leverage (And Reason) To Hold Out Than Khalil Mack

  1. This was all about Mack, and not about the team. Basically Mack turned his nose up at over 13 million just to be the richest DE in history. Like Woodson, he may be back in 7 years for a twilight contract. Great defenses win superbowls. Had he stayed and played for a measly 13 mil, the Raiders would have had a super bowl caliber defense. It’s time to close the door on Mack. He made his choice. Go Raiders. …

    1. I dont blame Mack one bit. He was the best defensive player the Raiders had since Woodson left for the Packers. He grossly out performed his rookie deal. First and only player ever to be be 1st team All-Pro at 2 positions in the same season. Mack knew his worth and didn’t settle. Good for him. Break this league for every dollar you can. Every owner in this league will tell you the NFL is a business. So the players should treat it the same way. In business the goal is to maximize profits. That’s what Mack did. Everyone’s situation is different. So Carr didnt hold out…and?? Carr hasn’t been regarded as one of the top 3 QB’s EVERY year he has been in the league. Khalil Mack has been one of the top 2 rated edge rushers in the game since day one. That’s why Mack could get away with holding out and Carr couldn’t.

  2. If you watched DC’s press conference yesterday his ultimate shock is Mack chose money over championships, friendship is one thing, but football business is a mixed bag. DC said let’s do this the holistic way, Mack I want it my way, personally I blame the agent. The new a year ago what was going on and I would speculate began to plant the seeds of discourse in Mack’s mind. Mack thought nothing like DC.

  3. Just goes to show who are team players and who’s not…. I would have loved to keep Mack but I think we all thought he was a team player not a greedy one. And everybody needs to stop talking about how we COULD have afforded Mack, of course we could have but we weren’t going to lock up all that money on just two players. We have 52 other guys we have to pay, why do you think there’s still not one team to ever sign 2 $100 million dollar players?? Because you sacrifice the quality of the rest of the team.

  4. Because Carr wants to be a Raider and knows he must leave some money to build a good team around him! Make more money winning Rings!!

  5. On any given play these guys careers can be over. I’m not mad Mack held out. Just because he didnt go the route Carr took doesn’t make him wrong. I would argue Carr is a middle of the pack QB who had a great season and got paid. He still could be Andy dalton for all we know. Mack is one of the best players at his position hands down who has never missed a game.

    1. not sure if you’re dissin Dalton or saying he will rise to the cream of the crop. I predict nothing but up for Andy this year, barring injury of course. tough division (like ours) mark these words, Derek Carr will also find success IMO. You are not wrong about Kahlil Mack…and his agent did pretty good as well, sadly. Gonna miss the Mack attack, he is going to have fun in Chicago.

  6. Carr is a class act and I would rather have him as a teammate he had every right to hold out considering he broke his leg and he didn’t Mack got what he wanted but who would you trust to win a game Carr or Trubisky

  7. ‪1. Mack’s older brother wasn’t the 1st pick of the ‘02 draft. No other millionaires in his fam.‬
    ‪2. The Raiders negotiated right away with Carr and throughout the offseason. There was no chance of a holdout. ‬

Comments are closed.