Raiders’ Mark Davis Takes Onus For Failing Derek Carr

Mark Davis, Derek Carr, Raiders
NFL Analysis Network

The Las Vegas Raiders made a major change this offseason. General manager Dave Zeigler and head coach Josh McDaniels decided it was time to shake things up and elected to move on from long-time starting quarterback, Derek Carr. 

Carr was selected in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft out of Fresno State and had been the starting quarterback for the Raiders ever since. But, he was released days after the Super Bowl and signed with the New Orleans Saints. Jimmy Garoppolo, who has ties to Ziegler and McDaniels from their time with the New England Patriots, will be taking over the starting quarterback job in Las Vegas.

There is a lot that went into the decision for the Raiders to ultimately move on from Carr. But, the responsibility for those failures has been taken on by owner Mark Davis. While speaking at the NFL owners’ meeting on Monday, Davis opened up about Carr’s departure from the franchise.

Davis took the onus for the shortcomings. The constant changing of the coaching staff he believes played a big part in Carr and the team not always living up to expectations on the field.

“Derek did a hell of a job, but throughout the process, he went through [six] different coaches so he never had a consistency to the head coaching part of the thing, nor to his coordinator part,” Davis said. “But he gave us everything he had for nine years.

“The only consistency for the last 11 years has been me, in this organization, so the buck stops with me. And I think that if you’re going to look at anybody that has failed, obviously, it’s me at putting leadership together and putting a team on the field. The only thing I can do is try to get better at it. As I’ve always said, the one thing I know is what I don’t know and I’m going to hire people that I believe are capable of doing it and give them a vision and goals and I’m going to let them do the job. I will play devil’s advocate and I will get in conversations, but again, I just believe that, in my position, I have to rely on the people that I hire.”

Davis took over ownership when his father, Al Davis, passed away in 2011. Since then, the team has had five different head coaches and two interim head coaches. Even the greatest of players would struggle with that kind of constant turnover on the coaching staff.

Davis made it clear that he leaves the football decisions up to the coaches. While he does sign off on the move, he does so without getting in the way of the decision. Another big reason for the team’s struggles in recent seasons is failed drafts.

Even going back to their time as the Oakland Raiders, this is a team that has constantly whiffed in the draft. Davis noted 2014 when Carr was selected in the second round and Khalil Mack was picked in the first, as the only fruitful one under his watch.

When looking back at their draft history, it is hard to argue against Davis’ assessment. Kolton Miller and Josh Jacobs are the only first-round picks made since Davis took over that are still on the team despite having 12 cracks at it.

That lack of success is something that would derail even the most stable of franchises. There were some pockets of success with Carr, who was a beacon of light during some tumultuous times. Davis is hoping things turn around, otherwise, he could be looking for a new head coach again sooner than later.