Can Carr break Ar­row­head curse?

Times-Herald (Vallejo) - - FRONT PAGE - Jerry McDon­ald

ALAMEDA >> We’ve seen a lot of growth in the sec­ond year of the union be­tween Derek Carr and Jon Gru­den.

Now comes the next step, and for Carr — es­pe­cially — it’s a big one.

Ar­row­head Sta­dium is the most hos­tile of en­vi­ron­ments for Carr. His record there is 0-5, his stats are aw­ful and not once has he passed the eye test of be­ing a solid, func­tional NFL quar­ter­back.

When the Raiders (6-5) visit the Kansas City Chiefs (7-4) Sun­day af­ter­noon, Carr might not win, but he needs to keep

the Raiders in the fight by be­ing a leader, avoid­ing turnovers and look­ing like the player who has both a sys­tem and a team within his con­trol.

You can’t be the quar­ter­back of the Raiders by con­tin­u­ing to floun­der at the road venue of your long­stand­ing AFC West ri­val.

A re­view of Carr’s Ar­row­head mis­ery:

• Dec. 14, 2015: Carr is 27 of 56 for 222 yards and one touch­down. The Raiders lose 31-13.

• Jan. 1, 2016: Carr is 21 of 33 for 1091 yards, one touch­down, one in­ter­cep­tion. The Raiders lose 23-17.

• Dec. 8, 2016: Carr is 17 of 41 for 117 yards and no touch­downs. The Raiders lose 21-13.

• Dec. 10, 2017: Carr is 24 of 41 for 211 yards and one touch­down, two in­ter­cep­tions. The Raiders lose 26-15.

• Dec. 30, 2018: Carr is 24 of 33 for 211 yards, 185 yards and two in­ter­cep­tions. The Raiders lose 35-3.

Sum­mary: Carr has com­pleted 113 of 204 passes (55.4 per­cent) for 926 yards, three touch­downs and five in­ter­cep

tions. The Raiders have av­er­aged just more than 12 points per game, but three of those games were at least com­pet­i­tive enough that a top flight quar­ter­back could have pulled out a win or two.

Carr has of­ten been a top-flight quar­ter­back. Just not at Ar­row­head. Carr’s passer rat­ing in those games is 61.4. As a point of ref­er­ence, the ca­reer passer rat­ing of JaMar­cus Rus­sell is 65.2.

There have been ex­ten­u­at­ing cir­cum­stances, not the least of which is the Chiefs usu­ally go in with su­pe­rior tal­ent, and that the game has al­ways taken place af­ter Dec. 1. That means on a good day the tem­per­a­ture might hit 45 de­grees with a cold breeze. On a bad day, it’s closer to zero with bonechilli­ng winds. Carr’s strug­gles in cold weather

are well known and he has heard plenty about it. It was no ac­ci­dent that he took the prac­tice field Thurs­day in a sleeve­less jer­sey for the cold­est prac­tice ses­sion of the sea­son. But let’s face it, many of those have been road games play­ing quar­ter­back for a mar­ginal team that was bound to strug­gle any­way. It’s also not a huge sam­ple size (0-4 at 40 de­grees or be­low 2-8 at 50 de­grees or be­low) for a quar­ter­back with 89 ca­reer starts.

Mt. Ever­est when it comes to Carr isn’t the weather. It’s Ar­row­head Sta­dium.

The last time the Raiders vis­ited Kansas City as divi­sion con­tenders, in 2016, they were 10-2 and the Chiefs were 9-3. It was 21 de­grees with a wind chill of 12. Carr had bro­ken the pinkie finger on his throw­ing hand two weeks ear­lier against Carolina. He had re­turned to that game — a vic­tory — and led another win the

fol­low­ing week de­spite be­ing un­able to take di­rect snaps from cen­ter.

Against the Chiefs,

Carr never com­pleted a pass of longer than 18 yards with no le­git­i­mate com­ple­tions down­field. With the Raiders trail­ing 21-13 with more than nine min­utes left, Amari Cooper broke into the clear and ri­valry mythol­ogy has it that Carr’s down­field throw hit a “Spi­derCam” wire. The ball flut­tered harm­lessly to the turf as if shot by a sniper.

So Carr’s dif­fi­cul­ties at Ar­row­head aren’t just prob­lem­atic, they’re just plain weird.

Chiefs quar­ter­back

Alex Smith, mean­while, was 17 of 26 for 264 yards, one touch­down and five com­ple­tions of 28 or more yards de­spite a rep­u­ta­tion of be­ing a cau­tious down­field thrower.

Raiders fans have run hot and cold on Carr the past two sea­sons, a byprod­uct of hav­ing in­fe­rior tal­ent and a 10-22 record.

No. 17 Mem­phis 34, No. 18 Cincin­nati 24 No. 19 Iowa 27, Ne­braska 24

No. 20 Boise State 31, Colorado State 24 No. 22 Ap­palachian State at Troy, 3 p.m. Vir­ginia 39, No. 23 Vir­ginia Tech 30

FAR WEST

Wash­ing­ton 31, Wash­ing­ton St. 13

Satur­day, Nov. 30

No. 1 LSU vs. Texas A&M, 4 p.m.

No. 2 Ohio State at No. 10 Michi­gan, 9 a.m.

No. 3 Clem­son at South Carolina, 9 a.m. No. 4 Ge­or­gia at Ge­or­gia Tech, 9 a.m.

No. 5 Alabama at No. 16 Auburn, 12:30 p.m.

No. 6 Utah vs. Colorado, 4:30 p.m.

No. 7 Ok­la­homa at No. 21 Ok­la­homa State, 5 p.m.

No. 8 Florida vs. Florida State, 4:30 p.m. No. 9 Min­nesota vs. No. 13 Wis­con­sin, 12:30 p.m.

No. 11 Bay­lor at Kansas, 12:30 p.m.

No. 12 Penn State vs. Rut­gers, 12:30 p.m. No. 14 Ore­gon vs. Ore­gon State, 1 p.m. No. 15 Notre Dame at Stan­ford, 1 p.m. No. 24 Navy at Hous­ton, 4 p.m.

L.A. Lak­ers L.A. Clippers Phoenix Sacramento War­riors

SOUTH­WEST DIVI­SION

Hous­ton Dal­las

New Or­leans San An­to­nio Mem­phis

NORTH­WEST DIVI­SION

16 14 8 7 4 12 11 6 6 5 13 13 12 10 4 2 5 9 10 15 6 6 12 13 12 4 5 6 9 14 .889 .737 .471 .412 .211 .667 .647 .333 .316 .294 .765 .722 .667 .526 .222

— 21⁄2 71⁄2 81⁄2 121⁄2

— 1⁄2 6 61⁄2 61⁄2

— 1⁄2 11⁄2

4 91⁄2

1. Ore­gon (6-0) beat UT Ar­ling­ton 91-54.

2. Bay­lor (7-0) beat No. 17 In­di­ana 77-62.

3. Stan­ford (6-0) vs. No. 18 Syracuse.

4. UConn (6-0) did not play.

5. South Carolina (6-1) vs. Wash­ing­ton State.

6. Texas A&M (5-0) did not play.

7. Ore­gon State (6-0) beat No. 19 Mi­ami 75-53.

8. Louisville (7-0) beat Ok­la­homa State 69-48.

9. Mary­land (6-1) beat Clem­son 63-44. Next: vs. Bel­mont, Satur­day.

10. Mis­sis­sippi State (7-0) vs. Bowl­ing Green.

11. UCLA (5-0) did not play.

12. Florida State (6-0) did not play.

12. N.C. State (5-0) vs. Texas.

14. Ken­tucky (6-0) did not play.

15. Michi­gan State (5-1) lost to LSU 58-56.

16. DePaul (5-1) did not play. Next: at North­west­ern, Sun­day.

17. In­di­ana (5-1) lost to No. 2 Bay­lor 77-62.

18. Syracuse (4-1) vs. No. 3 Stan­ford.

19. Mi­ami (4-2) lost to No. 7 Ore­gon State 75-53.

20. Ten­nessee (6-0) did not play.

21. South Florida (5-3) lost to Florida Gulf Coast 81-77.

22. Gon­zaga (4-1) beat Day­ton 76-65.

23. West Vir­ginia (5-1) beat New Mex­ico 73-60.

24. Ari­zona (7-0) beat UC River­side 70-27.

25. Arkansas (6-1) beat Ford­ham 71-59.

FAR WEST

Abi­lene Chris­tian 76, Portland 69 Ari­zona 70, UC River­side 27

Ari­zona St. 57, Maine 31

CS Bak­ers­field 75, San Jose St. 71 Cal­i­for­nia 90, NC Cen­tral 69

Den­ver 83, UC Irvine 75

Ge­or­gia St. 59, New Mex­ico St. 51 Gon­zaga 76, Day­ton 65

Hous­ton 96, Cal­i­for­nia Baptist 75 Mar­quette 77, Saint Mary's (Cal) 63 Ne­vada 80, Chicago St. 60

Old Do­min­ion 61, Cal Poly 55

Ore­gon 91, Texas-Ar­ling­ton 54 Pep­per­dine 79, Cal State Los An­ge­les 56 San Diego 57, Mon­mouth (NJ) 49

San Fran­cisco 64, Bowl­ing Green 56 Wash­ing­ton 75, Howard 58

Yale 87, Fresno St. 67

Ed­mon­ton Ari­zona Sharks Van­cou­ver Ve­gas Cal­gary Anaheim Los An­ge­les

CEN­TRAL DIVI­SION

St. Louis Win­nipeg Colorado Dal­las Nashville Min­nesota Chicago

Bos­ton Florida Buffalo Toronto Tampa Bay Mon­treal Ot­tawa Detroit 27 26 27 26 27 28 27 26

GP W

26 26 25 26 24 26 25 26 25 26 27 23 25 26 28 16 15 14 12 12 12 11 10 15 16 15 15 11 11 10 18 12 12 12 12 11 11 7

GP W

8 8 12 10 11 12 12 14 5 9 8 9 9 11 10 3 8 10 11 8 9 14 18

MET­RO­POL­I­TAN DIVI­SION

3 3 1 4 4 4 4 2 6 1 2 2 4 4 5 5 5 4 4 3 5 1 3 35 33 29 28 28 28 26 22 36 33 32 32 26 26 25 41 29 28 28 27 27 23 17

L OT Pts

86 75 78 85 81 70 71 68 78 76 90 72 84 76 71 96 91 77 91 86 85 68 60 77 61 89 79 80 85 82 88 72 74 72 62 82 84 74 64 93 80 91 76 89 81 110

GF GA

at In­di­ana at J Madi­son at Buffalo at Ge­orge­town So. Dakota at RICH­MOND E.Ten­nessee St. at B GREEN Evansville at La Tech Bel­mont at C. Michi­gan at Ga. South­ern at Arkansas Fresno St. at Ohio at Toledo at Cincin­nati at Umkc at Van­der­bilt at G. Canyon at Mon­tana St. at Colorado at Seat­tle U at UC Irvine SE.Mis­souri at Santa Clara

Satur­day

Fa­vorite

at New Jer­sey at Mon­treal at Toronto at Tampa Bay at Detroit at Florida at NY Is­lan­ders at Cal­gary at Ari­zona at St. Louis at Colorado at Ed­mon­ton at Los An­ge­les

Sun­day

Fa­vorite

161⁄2 31⁄2

8

81⁄2 61⁄2 off

4 off 21⁄2 101⁄2 91⁄2 71⁄2 131⁄2 161⁄2 61⁄2 91⁄2 13 111⁄2 61⁄2

4

61⁄2

5 181⁄2 121⁄2 9 off off

So. Dakota State

E. Carolina Wil­liam & Mary NC Greens­boro

at N. Ari­zona Bos­ton Col­lege

at Ualr Dart­mouth

at Iupui Sam­ford at Mid. Ten­nessee Youngstown St. North Dakota

N. Ken­tucky at CS.Northridge

Detroit Oak­land

UNLV W. Illi­nois Tulsa Ipfw Green Bay Sacramento St.

Idaho E. Michi­gan

Den­ver Cal St.-Fuller­ton -133/+123 -134/+124 -234/+214 Off

Off

Off

Off

Off

Off

Off

Off -133/+123 Off

NY Rangers Philadel­phia

Buffalo Carolina Wash­ing­ton Nashville Colum­bus Ot­tawa San Jose Pitts­burgh

Chicago Van­cou­ver

Win­nipeg

Ge­or­gia 28 (461⁄2)at Ge­or­gia Tech at Tem­ple 27 (49) UConn Tulsa 51⁄2 (61) at E. Carolina at Pitts­burgh 81⁄2 (511⁄2) B. Col­lege at Ten­nessee 23 (451⁄2) Van­der­bilt Wake For­est 31⁄2 (691⁄2) at Syracuse at Co. Carolina 7 (531⁄2) Texas State Iowa St. 51⁄2 (441⁄2) at Kansas St. North Carolina 11 (56) at NC State at Mar­shall 71⁄2 (481⁄2) FIU Navy 81⁄2 (58) at Hous­ton Bay­lor 14 (481⁄2) at Kansas Ohio State 8 (491⁄2) at Michi­gan Clem­son 27 (51) at So. Carolina Wis­con­sin 21⁄2 (45) at Min­nesota at Penn St. 391⁄2 (501⁄2) Rut­gers at Lib­erty 14 (651⁄2) New Mex­ico St. at Utah 28 (481⁄2) Colorado Char­lotte 91⁄2 (50) at Old Do­min­ion at W.Ken­tucky 81⁄2 (461⁄2) M. Ten­nessee at Air Force 11 (411⁄2) Wy­oming Fresno St. 21⁄2 (61) at San Jose St. Rice 61⁄2 (431⁄2) at UTEP at Ne­vada 7 (511⁄2) UNLV In­di­ana 7 (57) at Pur­due at LSU 17 (641⁄2) Texas A&M at Ken­tucky 3 (521⁄2) Louisville Alabama 31⁄2 (491⁄2) at Auburn at La.-Lafayette 191⁄2 (691⁄2) La.-Mon­roe at Ga. South­ern 7 (57) Ge­or­gia St. at Illi­nois 71⁄2 (41) N'western at Michi­gan St. 221⁄2 (471⁄2) Mary­land Ok­la­homa 131⁄2 (69) at Okla. St. at La Tech 21 (571⁄2) UTSA at FAU 81⁄2 (551⁄2)South­ern Miss at SMU 31⁄2 (71) Tu­lane at UCLA 1 (501⁄2) Cal­i­for­nia Notre Dame 161⁄2 (461⁄2) at Stan­ford at Ari­zona St. 131⁄2 (591⁄2) Ari­zona UAB 3 (491⁄2) at North Texas Utah St. 11 (631⁄2) at New Mex­ico Mi­ami 9 (441⁄2) at Duke at Florida 171⁄2 (541⁄2) Florida St. BYU 5 (38) at San Diego St. at Ore­gon 20 (651⁄2) Ore­gon St. at Hawaii 3 (541⁄2) Army

EMILEE CHINN — GETTY IM­AGES

Raiders quar­ter­back Derek Carr makes a pass dur­ing the sec­ond half against the Jets at MetLife Sta­dium on Sun­day in East Ruther­ford, New Jer­sey.

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