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Jon Gruden defends Derek Carr’s fourth-down throw away

Titans Raiders Football

Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) rolls out to pass against the Tennessee Titans during the first half of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019. (AP Photo/D. Ross Cameron)


It wasn’t likely to change the final outcome, but Derek Carr has taken heat for his throw away on fourth down late in Sunday’s 42-21 loss to the Titans.

With 3:50 remaining, the Raiders faced fourth-and-goal from the Titans 1-yard line.

Carr rolled right, away from pressure, and threw the ball out of the end zone, giving his receivers no chance.

Raiders coach Jon Gruden defended his quarterback after the game.

“He exhausted that play for what it was,” Gruden said, via Paul Gutierrez of ESPN. “I’m not going to be one to stand here and say that a turning point in the game, but I think he played really well today, Carr did, given what’s going on around him. I think there’s a big story there. At least, we recognize it, and we’re really proud of the way he’s competing and performing with all the moving pieces.”

The Raiders were without 1,000-yard rusher Josh Jacobs, receiver Hunter Renfrow and right tackle Trent Brown.

“Jacobs is our feature back,” Gruden said. “We miss Renfrow; we miss Trent Brown; we miss [Foster] Moreau; we miss [Vontaze] Burfict; we miss John Abram; we miss Karl Joseph. I’ll keep going. But our guys are fighting.”

Carr completed 25 of 34 passes for 263 yards and two touchdowns.