Derek Carr is the Raiders' franchise quarterback.
Until he's not.
Oakland's brain trust continues to say the right thing about Carr. But they're also hedging their bets in case something unexpected happens.
“I’m going to tell you, [Oakland Tribune Raiders beat writer] Jerry [McDonald], the same thing I told you at the combine and that I believe in, and I’ve said before: Derek Carr is a franchise quarterback, and we believe that," general manager Mike Mayock said Thursday. "Beyond that, just like in any other position, we’re going to do our due diligence. If we found somebody we like better or thought had bigger upside, then you got to do the right thing for the organization.
"We love Derek. We love what he brings to the table, but like every other position, we’re going to do all of our due diligence. I happen to work with a head coach [Jon Gruden] that absolutely loves that position. We’re always going to know about those guys.”
Why does this topic keep coming up? Because, as Mayock mentioned, Gruden loves him some quarterbacks, and the team is poking around NFL draft prospects Kyler Murray and Dwayne Haskins.
It might be inconvenient for Carr and Raiders fans to hear Gruden and Mayock waffle on this subject. But it shouldn't surprise them.
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Gruden and Mayock inherited a roster they didn't construct. If they don't believe in a player, it's their duty to make a change and bring in a player in whom they believe.
So, Carr might be the Raiders' franchise quarterback in this moment. He might not be if the team finds someone else it likes better.