The Raiders' quarterback depth chart appears to be shaking out right before our eyes. Schaub was the expected starter going in and according to Dennis Allen he has done everything expected of him and more. While Derek Carr has exceeded expectations and after taking some of the reps as Schaub's primary backup last week, took all the second team reps today.
As of last week, the talk was about whether Carr - the team's rookie second round pick - might challenge for the starting job. And while he has certainly impressed the coaches, the job is still Schaub's to lose. And Schaub has done little to show he will be losing it.
"I think he's been outstanding," said Allen. "That's what you're looking for in a veteran quarterback and I don't think we've seen the best of what we're going to see out of Matt Schaub. Even though he's a veteran player, it's still a new offense for him. It's still something new. He's still learning. But I've been very pleased with what I've seen out of him so far."
"Well, I feel good given the offseason progression, you know," said Schaub. "Kind of coming in a little over two months ago, where we're at as an offense and where I'm at within the offense, it's a continuing process and each day just trying to get a little bit better, pick out a few things to work on from the day before. But it's a never-ending process, just continuing to get better. But I feel good out there, feel good in the huddle, feel pretty good about what we're trying to accomplish offensively."
While the sexy storyline may be about how Schaub may be having to look over his shoulder at the young rookie Carr for his starting job, at this point the story surrounds Carr's ascension from third team quarterback to second team in three OTA practices.
Carr came into OTA's as the third team quarterback behind Schaub and Matt McGloin. Last week Carr and McGloin were sharing second team reps. Today Carr took all of the second team reps with McGloin taking over after that. That's a quick rise up the depth chart to be certain.
"You see every day, you see him do something," Allen said of Carr. "Today, he made a nice protection call, was able to get a pressure blocked up, get the ball out to the receiver. I've seen some progress from that standpoint. The thing about Derek is, and I've said this from the beginning, he's highly intelligent. He's able to take things that you teach him in the classroom and be able to apply those things to the field. There are still things that he misses, but that's why we practice."
"Just having been around him a little bit, you can tell he's a bright guy - works hard, studies hard," said Schaub. "[He's] always asking questions, which you want out of a young player. He's not trying to just learn it all himself. He's inquiring about different looks and different things. It's impressive the things that he's asking and trying to explain his knowledge and his understanding of the offense."
On a team with a coach who is known for keeping open competitions, Carr's progress to perhaps continue in training camp and challenge Schaub will be a subject of much conversation heading into training camp. After all, Matt Flynn was the first team quarterback last year and Matt McGloin was a camp arm and yet by the time the season came around, Flynn was riding the bench and McGloin started the second half of the season. So, we know stranger things have happened.
As of now, however, Schaub is the guy and he is not showing any signs of giving up his job. And even though Carr looks quite good, his rise to second team in a matter of a couple weeks will have to be enough to prove just how impressive he has been in Alameda this off-season.