Derek Carr understands that a good rivalry in the NFL can’t be one-sided. The Raiders have a contentious relationship with all three of their competitors in the AFC West, not to mention somewhat of a rivalry with their former neighboring Bay Area franchise in the 49ers.
Many would consider this week’s opponent, reigning Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs, one of the Raiders’ fiercest rivals. But Kansas City has won each of the last five matchups, four of them by double digits, which leads Carr to question whether the two teams really are “rivals,” at least in recent years.
Since Mahomes took over as the Chiefs’ starting quarterback, Kansas City has ascended to the top of the league, winning the Super Bowl a season ago, with Mahomes taking home the NFL MVP the year before that.
The Raiders have won just one of their past 11 games against the Chiefs, who have had the Silver and Black's number even before Mahomes arrived.
Carr has played well to start off the franchise’s first season in Sin City, as the QB is yet to throw an interception and is completing 73.6 percent of his passes. And just like Mahomes with All-Pro Travis Kelce, Carr loves to look for the tight end, as Darren Waller has 29 catches for 247 yards and a touchdown so far through four games.
But with plaguing injuries to the offensive line and receiving corps, Carr will need to be at his absolute best, as will what has been a disappointing defense for the Raiders to have a chance at stealing a win from Mahomes and the high-powered Chiefs in Week 5.