It wasn’t that long ago when Derek Carr was a legitimate MVP candidate. After leading the Raiders to a 12-3 record, Carr received MVP votes after throwing 28 touchdowns to just six interceptions.
But since that season, Carr’s production has taken a step backward. But to his credit, he had an impressive 2019 season, setting career-highs in completion percentage, passing yards and passer rating. So what are the odds that he is able to improve on those numbers and become an MVP candidate once again?
In a recent piece by Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report, he named seven darkhorse MVP candidates heading into the season. Carr made the list as the Raiders have suddenly built an offense around him that should allow him to thrive. Take a look at Knox’s thoughts on Carr entering the season:
Carr, 29, had very good numbers in his second season under Gruden—4,054 passing yards, 21 touchdowns, eight interceptions and a 100.8 rating—and there’s little reason to think they won’t be better.
Las Vegas added Henry Ruggs III, Bryan Edwards and Nelson Agholor to a young offense that already included rising stars Josh Jacobs, Darren Waller and Hunter Renfrow. On paper, this is the best supporting cast of Carr’s career, and it’s not a stretch to think he’ll use it to reenter the MVP discussion.
If Carr can continue to improve on the numbers we saw last season, the Raiders will have a great chance of making the playoffs. If that happens, Carr will certainly earn a few MVP votes. It’s not inconceivable that in 2020, Carr has a career year in his third season under Jon Gruden.