This offseason Michael Crabtree made a strong statement about his quarterback. He compared Derek Carr to soon-to-be-inducted Hall of Famer Brett Favre.
“He is always going to be a gunslinger and I love that,” Crabtree said of Carr. “That's the old Brett Favre-type of quarterback, but really managing Brett Favre. Brett Favre is one of the greatest players to ever play."
Derek Carr was asked about Crabtree’s comparison and, as you might expect, he was flattered by it, especially because Carr wears number four because it was Favre’s number.
“I was very honored. Very thankful,” said Carr. “Brett is somebody I looked up to as a kid. The way he played the game, so I wore number four ever since I could remember. I always wanted to wear four, somehow some way. For him to say that it was really cool because I don’t think I’ve told him that. But for him to come out and say that made me think ‘do I take too many chances?’ (laughs).
“But I think the wide receivers like that. They know that no matter what I’m gonna give them a chance. It doesn’t matter if you drop a ball, it doesn’t matter if I just sailed one eight rows deep, I’m gonna throw the next one just as confident and give you just as much of a chance. If that’s what he sees, I’m very thankful and honored, but I have a long way to go until I’m compared to Brett.”
Thursday NFL Network asked Favre himself if he saw the same gunslinger mentality in Derek Carr.
“I don’t think I’d call him a gunslinger,” said Brett Favre. “I think he’s a little bit more polished, with all due respect. I think he’s done a tremendous job with Oakland and I like the way he plays. But again I think he’s little bit more polished as I would say. But I like to watch him. Good player.”
The hosts of the show added that they suspect Favre meant Carr was more polished than he was at the same point in his career. Though he could have meant ever. Consider that in Carr’s first two seasons he’s thrown 13 and 12 interceptions. Only four times in Favre’s 19-year career as a starter did he throw as few as 13 interceptions. He averaged 17.5 interceptions per season.
When Crabtree initially said Carr was a “managing Brett Favre” it was somewhat of an odd statement because it seems like an oxymoron. Favre’s words signify that as well.
I would suggest that Carr does have some gunslinger mentality, but never nearly to the extent that Favre had. And between Carr’s first and second season, he added the polish and management skills of which Crabtree and Favre speak.