OAKLAND (3-5) At BALTIMORE (6-2)Sunday, 1 p.m., CBSOPENING LINE - Ravens by 7 12RECORD VS. SPREAD - Oakland 4-4; Baltimore 3-5SERIES RECORD - Ravens lead 6-1AP PRO32 RANKING - Raiders No. 27; Ravens No. 9LAST MEETING - Ravens beat Raiders 21-13, Jan. 3, 2010LAST WEEK - Raiders lost to Buccaneers 42-32, Ravens beat Browns 25-15STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES - Raiders QB Carson Palmer played against Baltimore 13 times as member of Bengals, going 9-4 and passing for 3,202 yards. ... Ravens have won three straight in series. Oakland's only win in Oakland in December 2003. ... It's return home of sorts for Raiders WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, who played at Maryland from 2006-08. ... Oakland top draft pick OL Tony Bergstrom will be playing against brother-in-law, Ravens LB Paul Kruger. ... Raiders top two RBs, Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson, nursing sprained right ankles. ... Raiders have scored in final two minutes of first half every game this year. ... Oakland WR Denarius Moore has TD catch in three of last four games. ... Raiders' third of five trips to Eastern time zone this year. They have thus far lost to Miami and Atlanta. ... Ravens have won 14 straight at home, longest current streak in NFL. ... Baltimore RB Ray Rice needs 1 yard on the ground to reach 5,000 for his career. Jamal Lewis (7,801 yards) only Ravens player to top 5,000. ... Baltimore 8-1 when WR Torrey Smith has TD catch. ... Ravens WR Anquan Boldin needs 32 yards to reach 10,000 from scrimmage for career. ... Ravens LB Terrell Suggs has four sacks in his last three games against Oakland. ... Ravens 27-5 against sub-.500 teams under coach John Harbaugh. ... Baltimore cornerback Cary Williams has four INTs in last five games. Teammate Ed Reed posted 60th career INT in last week's win over Cleveland. ... Ravens rookie kicker Justin Tucker has made 15 of 16 FG tries, going 4 for 4 from beyond 50 yards.
Jon Gruden has been interviewed several times since becoming Raiders head coach. Quarterback Derek Carr hasn’t listened to most of those sessions, and certainly doesn’t seek them out.
One landed in Carr’s inbox recently, and something Gruden said really resonated.
Gruden’s message, paraphrased: If Derek Carr is not successful, then I’ve failed as a coach.
There are two comments in that one. Gruden considers Carr extremely talented, and he’s taking responsibility for unlocking the quarterback's vast potential.
Gruden will be hands on in Carr’s development, with all the coaching intensity and fire and eyebrow raises that have become Gruden’s signature.
“He’s going to demand of me. He’s going to push me,” Carr said on this week’s episode of the Raiders Insider Podcast, which will drop Tuesday morning (Subcribe right here). “He’s going to make me be the best version of myself.”
Carr had a direct answer to skeptics wondering aloud whether he can thrive under Gruden’s particular coaching style.
“I want him to be tough on me,” Carr said. “For anyone who thinks I want him to be a different way has no clue about me or how I play football or how I prepare to play this game. I don’t need to tell stories about how I prepare or manage myself.
“(Jon) and I are going to get along great. I hope that he demands of me. I hope he’s hard on me. I don’t need to know he loves me. He has already told me that about 20 times. I appreciate that and we’ll be friends forever, but I know he’ll be demanding and tell me what I need to do. Let’s go fix problems that I have and let’s do what I need to do to win championships. Hopefully that will give people some insight and hopefully that’s the story that gets out, because that’s the truth.”
Carr met his new head coach briefly before his introductory press conference, but has known Gruden since filming the Gruden QB Camp segment back in 2014. They got along great then, and in each interaction since.
“We have so much more in common that people realize,” Carr said. “I think it would blow some people’s minds. Him and I are very similar in the way we go about our business and how we carry ourselves. It’s an exciting time.”
Carr’s excited to have some stability in his football life. The three-time Pro Bowl quarterback will start his fifth NFL season with his fourth head coach, fourth go-round with an offensive coordinator and third offensive scheme. Gruden signed a 10-year contract. OC Greg Olson signed a four-year pact. They’ll be here a while, and Carr’s excited about that.
“It’s going to be really nice,” Carr said. “To know Jon signed on for a 10 years and (Olson) signed on for a long time shows me a couple of things. No. 1: that they believe in me. I don’t think Coach Gruden would’ve quit his day job, which I’m thankful he did. To get (Olson) out of a good spot in L.A (with the Rams), shows that they believe in me and that’s awesome. And, No. 2: I’m going to have two people I can talk to in a different language for years to come. We can grow within the relationship, and hopefully we’ll all ride off together. It’s set up that way right now, and we have a lot of work to do to reach that point.”
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr is headed to his third consecutive Pro Bowl. He became eligible once New England qualified for the Super Bowl and Tom Brady was out of the running for next week’s NFL all-star game in Orlando.
Carr was the next alternate up, and accepted the invitation to represent the Silver and Black. Khalil Mack, Rodney Hudson, Kelechi Osemele and Donald Penn were named to the original roster, though Penn has bowed out with injury.
Carr will join his teammates in Florida for game-week festivities, followed by the inter-conference clash on Sunday at noon at Camping World Stadium. The game can be seen on ABC.
He joins Rich Gannon and Ken Stabler as Raiders quarterbacks with at least three Pro Bowl selections. Carr had a down year relative to his previous two, but still posted standout numbers. He had 3,496 passing yards, 22 touchdowns, 13 interceptions and an 86.4 passer rating.
The Raiders finished a disappointing 6-10, and head coach Jack Del Rio was fired in favor of Jon Gruden.
“It was not the year we wanted, but to still be recognized by you, Raider Nation and fans everywhere, and the players and coaches you go against is an extremely high honor I will always be thankful for!” Carr wrote in a note posted on Twitter. “Although I am extremely blessed to be thought of in such a way by my peers, I understand there is more work to do. There is more to achieve and more to accomplish and I will now ret until we get there, Raider Nation!”