PFF Analyst: Derek Carr Maybe the Most Valuable Second-Round Pick of the Last 15 Years

Pro Football Focus analysts don’t have a rich history of showing love for Derek Carr. Even when Carr was playing at his best this year, one PFF personality said at the time that Carr “doesn’t know what he is looking at” and has been the beneficiary of “a lot of luck” in 2020.

But not everyone at PFF makes jokes about the Raiders all-time leader in completions, passing yards, and passing touchdowns.

“I’m not necessarily a big fan of Derek Carr, but there is a good argument to be made that he is the most valuable second round pick of the last 15 years,” Pro Football Focus analyst Timo Riske tweeted last week.

“Draft a QB in the second round, make him a day 1 starter and have him play at an overall decent level for 7 years is pretty unheard of in the second round in recent years. That’s a fair argument and I tend to think the same about a QB like Derek Carr, but it’s hard to hold that against Derek Carr. If anything, hold that against the Raiders.”

There are a lot of opinions on Carr (particularly among the Raider fan base), but most would agree that he at least deserves an opportunity to play behind an average defense. To this point in his career, the best defense Carr has played with was ranked 20th in the NFL. That was in 2016 and the Raiders went 12-3 that season before Carr broke his ankle.

In 2020, Carr and the Raiders went 8-8 alongside the worst-ranked defense in the NFL.

Imagine if the Raiders could have only played a competent version of defense in 2020. Or even better, an elite defense capable of overcoming three interceptions in an elimination game (see: Brady, Tom) or holding the Chiefs to under 10 points in a championship game (see: Buccaneers, Super Bowl).

As an aside, Pro Football Focus also ranked the Raiders 2014 draft as the most valuable draft in the NFL since 2006. That class included Khalil Mack, Carr, Gabe Jackson, Justin Ellis, T.J. Carrie, and Shelby Harris.

PFF on Twitter: “The top NFL draft classes since ’06 🏆 / Twitter”

The top NFL draft classes since ’06 🏆

Former GM Reggie McKenzie made mistakes in his time with the Raiders, but he probably did a better job as personnel chief than anyone in the Raiders’ organization since the team’s last Super Bowl run.

Speaking of Raider general managers, this is a big year for Mike Mayock. His 2019 draft is loaded with talent – most of which is on the defensive side of the ball. Clelin Ferrell, Johnathan Abram, Trayvon Mullen, and Maxx Crosby are four of the most talented players on the Raiders’ roster. If all goes as planned, new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley will be able to get a a lot more out of them than what Paul Guenther was able to do.

By the way, the last time the Raiders fielded a defense that was ranked 16th or better in the league?

That was 2002, when they last went to the Super Bowl. It’s been all below average or terrible defenses ever since.

twitter: @raidersbeat


16 thoughts on “PFF Analyst: Derek Carr Maybe the Most Valuable Second-Round Pick of the Last 15 Years

  1. What a crock of BS – Drew Brees was selected No. 32 & Tom Brady was selected in the 6th round. Derick Carr was selected in the 2nd round and has played like a 2nd rounder, winning only 42% of his games

    1. You’re talking about very rare outliers.
      You want to move-on from Carr, what would be your plan?
      FACT: (14) QB’s were drafted in the Top-5, between 2009 – 2018, and only (1) QB remains with the team that selected him (Mayfield/Browns).

    2. You’re comment reveals you are just another hater and have no clue about the game of football. “Carr wins only 42% of his games” shows your ignorance as there are 21 other players, an offense and a defense, that make up the game. The author is spot on. In 2020 Carr lead the Raiders offense to 8th over all in the NFL. In 2016 he lead them as the number 4 offense in the NFL. Like the author said, had the defense actually been not ranked last or a best at 20 in Carr’s career, just an average or better defense, and the Raiders would have had way more success. Better to know what your talking about rather than spew ignorant hatred towards Carr.

    3. Correction number 6 offense in 2016. Also the author stated last 15 years. Brees and Brady have been playing longer than 15 years. Again, better you know what you are talking about before spewing.

    4. Both of those QBs were given excellent coaches and good defenses…Carr has never had the luxury of a good defense, let alone a good coaching staff. Don’t talk if you lack the knowledge…

    5. @BLACKBONES try to comprehend the headline and accompanying article.
      “Derek Carr Maybe the Most Valuable Second – Round Pick of the Last 15 Years”.
      Brees was drafted 20 years ago and Brady was a 6th rounder. The author clearly states that the lackluster winning percentage attributed to Carr is, due in large part, to the Raiders” below average and terrible defenses”. “…there is a good argument to be made that he is the most valuable 2nd round pick of the past 15 years”. True statement as far as the Raiders are concerned. As for the rest of the NFL 2nd rounders(in the past 15 years) Eric Weddle, Gronk, LeSean McCoy, and Leveon Bell are/were(IMO) more valuable in general to their respective teams.

    6. The article says he is the most vauable 2nd rounder of the LAST 15 YEARS. Brees and Brady were both drafted 20 years ago. And he plays like a second rounder? Is that why he was going to win the MVP in 2016 before he broke his leg? He’s won 42% of his games with one of the consistently worst defenses in the NFL and a lack of a talented receiving corps.

  2. Still all the carr haters are going to keep squawking about him…I have a theory about carr haters . I would bet 90% of them are of the millennial generation which means they are 38 or younger also the Z generation (don’t want to forget the kiddies) they want the world and they want it now….I think everyone commenting on carr , good or bad, should include their age . Then if a.o.c. is right and the world ends in 9 more years we won’t feel so bad about it…..F carr haters…..go RAIDERS

    1. hahaha, that may be so. I understand Raider fan frustrations, and I guess it’s easy to point to Carr, because he’s been the QB for the past 7 years, and many fans see the losing seasons, and make the direct correlation that it’s because of Carr. Is Carr elite? No, but in all seriousness, how many “elite” QB’s are there at any one time, 4-6, is my guess. If you break the 32 teams into quartiles, IMO, Carr is squarely in the 2nd quartile, i.e. 8 to 16, and I think that it can be argued that he’s in the 10-12 range, now. In his 7 years in the league, you can count on one hand, how many Offensive Pro-Bowler’s that’s he’s been able to share a huddle with. Carr haters seem to think that it would be easy to move-on from Carr, and get another QB, by trading up to the Top-5 in a draft class, to find a QB to lead this team to more victories. That’s just not realistic. FACT: (14) QB’s were drafted in the Top-5, between 2009 – 2018, and only (1) QB remains with the team that selected him (Mayfield/Browns).

    2. Love it, I’m a Carr supported. He’s done a heck of a job considering the sorry mess he’s had to work with. I’m 30 and can’t stand Carr haters. They have no idea what they are talking about

  3. Newsflash, no QB wins with a crap defense. In this years playoffs, every team but 1 (the Browns, ranked 21st), had a defense ranked in the Top-15. The (5) times that future 1st ballot HOF’r Aaron Rodgers played with a DEF outside the Top-20, the Packers record is 37-41-2. The The (9) times that future 1st ballot HOF’r Drew Brees played with a DEF outside the Top-20, his teams’ record is 68-76. It’s a team game, and DEF matters!

  4. If you think the 2019 Raiders draftees named above are talented, you should take a look at what PFF thinks of them. Ferrell is pretty good, ranked #16 at DE. But Abram is the rated as THE WORST safety in the NFL (with enough snaps to warrant a rating), Mullen is rated #82 out of 121, and Maxx is rated #83 out of 109 DEs. So no, they aren’t talented except for Ferrell.

  5. You realize Carr can’t be blamed for defense giving up 30+ points a game right you could take Brady and put him on an 0-16 team doesn’t mean they’re gonna go 16-0 it’s a team sport you can’t put the entire blame on Carr when the defense lets him down

  6. Ok, someone has to say it, so since no one else has, I will. Obviously, DeShaun Watson’s trade value has plummeted since all of the sexual assault allegations have hit the news. I’ve said previously that I have been a Raiders fan since 1968 so with all of that said; Does ANYONE doubt that if Al Davis was alive that he would not make a play for DeShaun Watson? Of course not BECAUSE, Al Davis would immediately recognize DeShaun Watson’s quarterbacking abilities irrespective of his pending legal troubles. Al Davis would also realize that this young man would be motivated to win and most certainly committed and grateful to whatever team believes in him during this “trying time.” Al Davis made a similar unprecedented move by signing Jim Plunkett after the New England Patriots and San Francisco 49ers gave up on him. Jim Plunkett responded with TWO Super Bowl wins for the Raiders. EVERYONE knows it is a documented fact that Jon Gruden loves quarterbacks. IF the Raiders should make a move for and sign DeShaun Watson, it would be a play right out of the Al Davis School of Football Playbook. What am I saying? That as a long time Raiders fan, since 1968, I recognize an Al Davis moment when I see one. EVERYONE who knows ANYTHING about Al Davis knows that he absolutely LOVED using moments like this to make the NFL and other football franchises eat crow. Just like how he drafted Rocket Ishmael when he signed with the Toronto Argonauts instead of the NFL. Just like how he drafted and signed Bo Jackson after Jackson declined to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers the year before. So, it would only be fitting, in Al Davis and Raiders fashion, to sign DeShaun Watson, for considerably much less than he would have cost just a few short weeks ago and watch as the NFL and other NFL teams squirm, bite their nails and mumble under their breaths about how the spirit of Al Davis, and the once glorious Raiders mystique, has returned, just in the nick of time, to this once proud franchise by making one of the shrewdest football moves ever. May the spirit of Al Davis rise and live once again.

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