GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Raiders faced a third-and-5 when quarterback Derek Carr chucked the ball deep for running back Jalen Richard in the first quarter Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.
The pass fell incomplete and, as the Oakland offense came back to the sideline at State Farm Stadium, coach Jon Gruden voiced displeasure with Carr’s decision-making.
Carr clapped back, and the two shared a heated exchange. CBS cameras caught the whole thing, leaving many to wonder if all the losing had strained the QB-coach relationship.
After a last-second win, both parties put the kibosh on that.
“That’s the first time you’ve seen it, but it isn’t the first time it has happened,” Gruden said after the win. “We’re both competitors. We had a man-to-man situation, and he went for the big play. We had a mild disagreement.
"You know what? That’s part of the business. We’re going to have times where we clash a little bit. We’re also very supportive of each other. I’m really proud of him. He’s been through a lot this year, and I’m glad he’s our quarterback.”
While Gruden and Carr have worked well together, they won’t always agree. Carr fired back at his coach a few times Sunday, like former Raiders QB Rich Gannon used to do with Gruden in the early 2000s.
Carr didn’t consider any disagreement a big deal, and said it happens more than fans realize.
“I’m surprised it’s the first time that they’ve caught us," Carr said. "It’s not the first time he and I have been that way. We’re both fiery. A lot of people don’t see that in me, right?
"We’re both competitive. It was a minor disagreement on something. It’s never a demeaning thing. We’re both yelling the same thing almost.
"It’s not the first time. I doubt I will be the last. Everything’s good. I promise.”
Tight end Lee Smith played a part in the Carr-Gruden exchange. He put his hand on Gruden’s shoulder during the argument and, from the outside, seemed to be playing peacemaker.
Smith insisted that wasn’t the case.
“I probably shouldn’t have grabbed the head coach, but I got a little fired up about it,” Smith said. “It was all in good fun. There was no negativity at all. ...
"There was no peacemaking by me. I didn’t feel the need to intervene. Their relationship couldn’t be healthier. All of us see that every day. There was no peacemaking intent. I just happened to be in the vicinity. I saw the wild man’s face red, so I figured I’d join the party.”