Derek Carr Explains What Being Raiders' Starting Quarterback Means to Him

Derek Carr is entering his sixth season as the starting quarterback of the Raiders. 

Drafted with the No. 36 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, Carr has been the face of the Silver and Black for more than half a decade. An honor that means more to him than he can fully describe. 

"This is something that I dreamed of as a kid," Carr told ESPN's Sal Paolantonio. "When I grew up it was Cowboys and Raiders. That's all I knew, you know? I want to leave a legacy here. I don't just want to be someone who, "Oh yeah, he used to play here.' I want to be one of those guys that when you think of the Raiders that I'm one of the guys you think about. That's why I just continually give this city and this organization every bit of my energy."

Carr has had an up-and-down tenure in Oakland. He was seen as the hottest young quarterback in the NFL during the 2016 season, but his production has dipped over the last two campaigns.

Still, the Fresno State product has put up numbers, and currently is just 340 yards and 29 touchdowns shy of breaking Raiders passing records set by Kenny Stabler. Being mentioned in the same breath as the Raiders legend is special for Carr. 

"Honestly, that gives me goosebumps," Carr said. "That was my dad's favorite player growing up. That's all I heard about growing up. The Snake. That was it. ... To be in that position, in that conversation, to take that next step, I will do it with honor, respect, with gratitude to his family and just to honor him."

Stabler won Super Bowl XI with the Raiders and universally is recognized as one of the best players to ever don the silver and black. Carr wishes he and Stabler, who died in 2015, could sit down and talk so he could ask Stabler a myriad of questions, but one in particular.

"I would ask him, 'what did it mean to you to be the Raiders' quarterback?'" Carr said. "I want to know what made his heart -- just every day he woke up -- say, 'I love this place.' I want to know what made him tick. What made him, through the dogs days of camp, continually wear the silver and black. Through the hard times, the good times, what made him tick? You know, 'Mr. Stabler, what did you love about being the Raiders' quarterback?'"

As the Raiders prepare to kick off the 2019 season -- likely their last campaign before they leave Oakland for Las Vegas -- Carr has more weapons at his disposal than at any other point in his career.

Head coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock revamped the offense in the offseason by trading for Antonio Brown, signing Tyrell Williams, drafting Josh Jacobs and Hunter Renfrow and signing right tackle Trent Williams to keep Carr upright.

Couple the new additions with another offseason to learn Gruden's complex offensive scheme and many believe Carr and the Bay Area pirates could have an explosive offensive season. 

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After a disappointing 2018 season that saw Carr and Gruden heavily criticized for the Raiders' lackluster performance, QB1 of the Silver and Black is out to silence critics of him and his team this year.

The campaign to silence the doubters begins in earnest Sept. 9 when the Raiders open the season on "Monday Night Football" against the Denver Broncos.

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