Ray Ratto

Presented By Ray Ratto
Ray Ratto

Derek Carr? Traded? Sure, why the hell not? If you’re going to burn the village, you may as well pour quicklime down the well.
In the aftermath of the surprisingly justifiable Amari Cooper trade (nearly everyone in the world thinks the Dallas Cowboys got fleeced nearly as badly as the Oakland Raiders got fleeced in the Khalil Mack trade), we have seen yet again that Emperor Palpatine-Designate Jon Gruden and general manager/underling Reggie McKenzie are not sitting in on the same staff meetings. McKenzie said he will listen to offers until the trade deadline this coming Tuesday, and Gruden says there will be no more trades. Given their respective track records, McKenzie’s word has far more throw weight.
But no, a Gareon Conley or Karl Joseph trade will not do. Sure, they would all but complete the gutting of the Raiders’ first round draft picks from 2014 through 2017 (or B.C. – Before Chucky), but there seems no compelling reason not to dip into the second round for fresh meat as well, where you can find Carr. All the others are gone, of course, except safety Obi Melifonwu, who is hurt and therefore undesirable.
So Carr it is, and though some people in a position to blather aloud about it think it could happen before the 2019 Combine, there is no compelling reason for Gruden to wait if he’s made up his mind. 
And we’re betting he has. There is very little earth he hasn’t scorched, and all the McKenzie road signs have been either burned or pulled out of the ground. Gruden has concluded this team stinks, has made every effort to tell everyone it stinks short of forming the words. If the truth is the occasional casualty? Well, Jon clearly figures it isn’t really lying if it’s to a fan base you don’t have to worry about in two Christmases.
I mean, how much more pissed can they get? They hate his guts now. Does he has reserve guts?
Now, there is a case to be made that quarterbacks are too hard to find, and that even one as seemingly overwhelmed as Carr has become is still more valuable in the building than out. But that case won’t be made by Gruden, at least not convincingly.
He wouldn’t have to trade Carr immediately to make this happen, but he seems so eager to gut the building and burn the furnishings that it would be impolite to tell him that haste is not his friend here. If he really has the itch to move Carr for the crime of already being here, there’s no time like the present.
The only true issue left, frankly, is whether he can find someone as impetuous as himself, with a similar disregard for first-round selections and rational yet modern team building. He did that in the Cooper trade with Jerry Jones, whose football attention span makes most fruit flies look like chess grandmasters, and Carr could conceivably be detoxified by the right coach with the right cast in the right system. He is not irredeemable, except as a Raider, because all the Raiders are irredeemable.
Or injured. Let’s not forget Marshawn Lynch.
But hell, maybe Jerry has decided to bag Dak Prescott while he’s at it. Who knows? He knows less about football than Gruden will ever comprehend, but has more power than Gruden will ever seize. Hell, Jerry could just as soon wake up some morning and go, “Hey Jon, I’ve got more of these first-round thingamabobs you seem to be so hot for – let’s talk some bidness.”
That’s the trick for Gruden – finding another Jerry, or for that matter, another Gruden. And that’s the hardest part of all. People with that minimal an attention span don’t normally rise to this level of human exchange.
He can do it, though. We have faith. All he has to do is say, “I would never trade Derek Carr,” and his unstated wish will be his command. That’s all we need to hear – a sincere denial. Once we get that, we’re on our way.
And so, coincidentally, will Derek Carr – the last piece in a puzzle that not only never got finished, but had hot grease spilled on it so all the pieces were ruined ahead of time.