clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Raiders Derek Carr returns 100% "like nothing had ever happened"

New, comments
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

After not having thrown a pass in OTA's all last month, Raiders second year starting quarterback Derek Carr was cleared to throw in practice for minicamps. He took the field and from the outset appeared to not have any effects from his finger injury. He said he has felt ready to go for a while now and indicated the injury was not near as severe as it was made out to be.

"There was really nothing big to it," Carr said of the finger injury. "I just had to go through a little rehab and stretching and all that kind of stuff. I felt great. I felt ready to rock a long time ago and I felt even better today. We weren't going to get too much into it but I'm 100%. If you could be more than a hundred, that's where I'm at. Just ready for camp.

"It was so minor. It got blown up so much, we were like ‘oh, man' but when my teammates had that support, they were like ‘don't worry about that right now. Half the time veterans don't even show up for this kind of stuff anyway'."

From my perspective it appeared Carr was not limited. His passes had all the velocity and the spirals were as tight as we've come to expect from him. He made several nice connections with his receivers, many of which went to rookie first round pick, Amari Cooper. One of those connections was a big long ball late in practice up the left sideline for a score that drew some excitement from the rest of the offensive players.

His head coach agrees Carr had a strong first day back.

"It was great to see Derek looking like nothing had ever happened," said Jack Del Rio. "He stepped in and was performing. So, that was good to see, good to have him back in the full rotation of things."

Despite his coach's perspective as well as others watching, Carr admits there was some rust he needed to knock off with regard to his accuracy.

"That's what happens when you haven't thrown for 30 or 40 days now," said Carr. "That's gonna happen. There's nothing you can do about it, but the good thing was to get back in the huddle and be that eye in the huddle, be that leader so they can hear your voice. It started to get better actually as practice went on. As more reps come, it will be more natural like it should be, but it was definitely rusty at first."

According to Carr, that 30-40 day break from throwing was the longest he had ever gone since playing football without throwing a pass.

Even without throwing, Carr has been doing all the other work necessary to prepare himself. He has been taking ‘mental reps' and his proficiency of the new playbook recently had his left tackle Donald Penn saying Carr knows the offense almost as good his offensive coordinator.

"He's been very diligent," Del Rio said of Carr. "Really taking pride in his work and his preparation. He wants to be in charge and in order to be in charge, you have to know what you're doing and what everybody does around you. I think he's done a great job of working at it and trying to process in his head exactly what it's going to be like. That's important because the sooner we can get him really comfortable the better."

The Raiders have two more days of mandatory minicamp before they take their month and a half break. Having Carr back in the fold for these practices was important to send the players off on the same page for when they return in late July for training camp.