Raiders announce shocking decision ahead of Week 17
The Las Vegas Raiders are making a major change with two weeks remaining in the regular season.
Josh McDaniels announced on Wednesday that Derek Carr has been benched in favor of Jarrett Stidham. The Raiders coach said the plan is for Carr and some other veterans to sit over the final two weeks of the season so the team can get a look at their younger players.
“None of us are happy with where we’re at, but we think it’s an opportunity to evaluate a younger player who hasn’t had much time to play,” McDaniels told reporters. “Talking to Derek, who was great, he understands the scenario that we’re in and the situation. He was very supportive of the two young (quarterbacks) and he’ll do anything he can to help them.”
McDaniels was also noncommittal when asked about Carr’s future with the Raiders.
“There is a lot to be sorted once the season is over,” the coach said.
Las Vegas fell to 6-9 with their loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday. Carr threw three interceptions in the game and now has 14 on the year, which is more than any other quarterback.
The Raiders have virtually no chance of making the playoffs. It is quite possible that benching Carr is the first step toward moving on from him when the season ends.
As one NFL reporter explained this week, the Raiders have a big decision to make with Carr and a very short window to make it. Carr will be owed a lot of money if he remains on Las Vegas’ roster after the third day of the waiver period, which begins the day after the Super Bowl.
Carr also has guarantees for injury in his contract, so it makes sense for the Raiders to do everything they can to keep him healthy. That is also a smart approach if they want to shop him in trade talks.