ALAMEDA – The Raiders called to tell quarterback Derek Carr they’d drafted him No. 36 overall. The conversation didn’t last long.
“I just said, I appreciate you calling, you know what you’re getting,” Carr said Friday on a conference call shortly after being drafted. “I’m going to come in and work, I’m going to come in and compete and I’m going to try and make the team better. I’m not a selfish guy, that’s for sure, and I can’t wait to get coached by those coaches.”
The Raiders certainly know Carr well. They met with him at the Senior Bowl. They sent a fleet of powerful people to his pro day at Fresno State.
They watched Carr play. They knew well how he went about his business. They liked what they saw. “Love” might be the more operative word.
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Sources indicated that Carr was the top quarterback on the Raiders draft board, and jumped at the chance to select him early in the second round.
It was far lower than most expected. Many thought Carr would go in the first round, no later than the mid-20s. But the fall of all quarterbacks impacted his draft status, with Johnny Manziel going No. 22 overall and Teddy Bridgewater went No. 32.
That makes for a long wait, especially when cameras kept cutting back to his Bakersfield home.
While it took longer than expected, Carr was happy with the outcome.
“You just sit there and wait for your phone to ring. It’s weird,” Carr said. “You sit there, you hope it rings with every pick that goes by. But I have to be honest, the way it worked out, the place I’m going and the coaches and players I’ll be around, I couldn’t be happier.”
Carr felt that way despite the fact he may spend a season or two sitting behind veteran Matt Schaub. Carr is ready for anything, and emphasized that it won’t impact his work ethic one bit.
“With them selecting me, I know their thoughts,” Carr said. “They want me to come in, work hard, compete. Whenever I’m the quarterback, great. To me, it doesn’t matter what the situation is – if I’m a starter, if I’m a backup, there to learn. My No. 1 goal is to help the Raiders win, and I’m going to do that. If I’m the starter, obviously on the field, I’m going to do my best to help them win. If I’m the backup, my role, it doesn’t change. I’m still going to help the team win.”