Guru of the Diagonals: The lights go out in Las Vegas

MIAMI — As in life, in sports the path is rarely linear.

Perhaps there is no team today that better illustrates this statement than the Las Vegas Raiders.

After all, his 2021 season was one of the most tumultuous in NFL history.

Raiders fans possibly thought nothing could be worse than the drama they experienced with Anthony Brown in 2019, but nothing would compare to last year.

For those who do not remember, I give you a small compilation:

In October, emails were leaked that his then-head coach Jon Gruden had sent in 2011, which contained multiple homophobic and misogynistic comments, and in the end, Gruden ended up resigning and his name was removed from the franchise’s Ring of Honor.

In November, the former first-round pick Henry Ruggswas driving under the influence of prohibited substances at 156 miles per hour, when he crashed and killed tub dyer23 years old and her dog.

That same month, another former first-round pick, Damon Arnettewas cut after a video surfaced of him with guns making death threats.

In December, a true icon of the franchise passed away, John Madden.

In January, then-rookie cornerback Nate Hobbs is arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol; Hobbs played the same way in week 18 against the Los Angeles Chargers.

As you can imagine, it was a roller coaster of emotions for the franchise, but the Raiders still managed to win the final four games of the regular season and qualify for the playoffs.

Still, considering the Raiders hadn’t hit many first-round picks in recent times, Mark Davis decided to fire the general manager Mike Mayock.

Perhaps even more surprising was the fact that they decided that Rich Bisaccia not continue as head coach, even though he was unanimously respected in the locker room.

The general manager came into the equation Dave Ziegler and the head coach Josh McDanielstwo names of weight that promised to excite the fans.

And they did just that. Not to mention when the Raiders made a trade to acquire the wide receiver Dave Adams and signed to Chandler-Jones as a free agent.

If the Raiders were able to get through the tragic year they had just been through, nothing could stop them this season. Certain?

The Raiders, so far, have been one of the biggest disappointments this season. They currently have a 2-5 record and are coming off their worst loss of the season.

Las Vegas was shut out 24-0 by the New Orleans Saints, whose defense entered this meeting allowing 28.6 points per game.

However, the Raiders narrowly avoided becoming the fifth team in history to not have a single play in opposing territory; crossed rival territory with just over a minute to play in junk time, and when Jarrett Stidham I was at the controls.

“I want to apologize to Raider Nation,” coach Josh McDaniels said after the game. “Our work was unacceptable, and it is entirely my responsibility.”

No one doubts McDaniels’ ability as an offensive mind; he was an integral part of the New England Patriots dynasty.

This is his second stop as head coach, after failing in his first with the Denver Broncos. He himself has admitted that at that time he was not ready, and that this opportunity grabs him much more prepared.

Obviously his story with the Raiders is just beginning, but his specialty — offense — hasn’t worked out yet, and after seven weeks, Las Vegas still doesn’t seem to have a clear identity.

Do not forget that sometimes a new system and a new way of working takes time to implement. However, they will have to show a better face in the second half of the season, if they do not want the fans and Mark Davis to start losing patience.

Which brings us back to Derek Carrwho threw for a career-low 101 yards when uninjured.

In his case, no one disputes that he earned his contract extension in the offseason. Not many quarterbacks would have been able to rise up in the face of adversity and lead their team to the playoffs in 2021.

Additionally, he finished fifth in the league in passing yards and had the third-highest completion percentage of his career.

So the Raiders gave him a three-year, $121.5 million extension.

A year ago, the Raiders were hesitant to extend Carr, but timing is everything in contract negotiations, and Carr showed elite performance and leadership at just the right time.

As if that were not enough, it served to recruit Adams, who wanted to play with his former quarterback at Fresno State University.

The problem now is that he hasn’t had the best start to the season, and if it weren’t for the great start to the season Josh Jacobsthe offensive would be even more inoperative than what we have seen so far.

They have plenty of talent, but something hasn’t clicked, and of course we repeat that McDaniels is responsible.

I’ve defended Carr against excessive criticism in the past, because this is a team sport, and neither the offensive line, nor the front office, nor the defenses have been with him in recent times. And so it becomes difficult to win.

However, I must admit, I’ve always doubted whether or not I had elite paste.

The reality is that when we see special talent, it is recognized almost immediately, as was the case recently with Joe Burroweither patrick mahomes either Justin Herbert either Lamar Jackson.

Winning right away isn’t for everyone, but the different ones always give us a few splashes that show us their entry worth.

Carr is a good, win-win quarterback who certainly deserved an extension.

Now, I keep asking myself the same question I did a few years ago: Can Carr reach an elite level?

And so many years have passed that I think the question already answers itself.

There’s still a lot of season left, and maybe the Raiders can turn the equation around. Perhaps there will come a time when the message McDaniels trumpets will reach its destination and the identity of the team will be clear.

But a management must constantly ask questions, and evaluate potential scenarios.

If the Raiders continue down this path and don’t make the playoffs, maybe it’s time to turn the page.

There will be plenty of teams interested in Carr, and the upcoming draft class promises to be fantastic.

If Carr can’t handle this squad, I don’t know which one he can handle.

This opinion may be unpopular, but I always cite the Buffalo Bills as an example. They had just qualified for the playoffs, after breaking a 17-year playoff drought. your marshal tyrod taylorwho I obviously don’t compare to Carr, had just led them where they wanted to go a long time ago.

However, internally they knew that the ceiling was limited, and decided to turn the page, and take a risk by choosing a certain Josh Allen in the draft, out of the University of Wyoming.

Franchises should always aim for heaven, and I’m not so sure Derek Carr can reach it anymore.

And to remember better times in the history of the Raiders, we review 10 OF THE BEST PLAYS IN THE HISTORY OF THE FRANCHISE.

*Local teams are in second place

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Guru of the Diagonals: The lights go out in Las Vegas