In need of a quarterback for the upcoming season — as Mike White is not a long-term solution nor is Zach Wilson — a short-term fix for the Jets, desperate to make the playoffs for the first time in more than a decade, was to bring former Raider Derek Carr in for a visit this week to discuss the possibility of him coming to New York.
Per most accounts, the visit with the 31-year-old went quite well and he “hit it off” with Jets head coach Robert Saleh. “He went there to get a feel for how they work from the top down,” Carr’s brother David, a former NFL QB said on NFL Total Access. “Everyone he met, and we knew he would love Robert Saleh. I’ve known Robert for a while. He’s fantastic and they hit it off and they would love to work together.”
One reason Carr may have enjoyed his visit with the Jets is that the team pitched him that they could be headed to the Super Bowl and he could eventually be on his way to Canton if he takes his talents to New York, according to ESPN’s Dianna Russini.
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“They were pretty clear with him — they told him he’s a great quarterback, they told him he’s got a legit surrounding cast of players,” Russini said on NFL Live. “They ran top-to-bottom of why Derek Carr can step in here and take this team, not just to the playoffs, but to the Super Bowl. [The Jets] made it super personal, too. They said ‘We believe if you come to New York and win, you could be a first-ballot Hall of Famer.’”
While the Jets were correct that they have a legit surrounding cast of players, including reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year Sauce Gardner and reigning Offensive Rookie of the Year Garrett Wilson, awaiting a quarterback in New York, the team was largely blowing smoke about Carr’s chances of earning a gold jacket.
For starters, Carr has a career record of 63-79 and has played in exactly one playoff game — which he lost. While a Super Bowl title is not needed to make it to Canton, Y.A. Tittle is the only Hall-of-Fame quarterback since 1960 who doesn’t have a playoff win.
Carr, who has made the Pro Bowl four times, is also just not pacing as a Hall of Famer as his career is currently comparable to quarterbacks including Andy Dalton, Ken O’Brien, Ryan Tannehill, Ron Jaworski, Kirk Cousins, Jim Everett, Phil Simms, Jon Kitna and Tony Romo, according to Pro Football Reference. All-time goods, not greats.
There’s also the question of how much Carr really has left in the tank, which was raised by Football Outsiders. “It feels strange to care about Derek Carr at this time of year,” per the site. “Frankly, it feels a bit strange to care about Carr at all. Carr spent nearly a decade in a well-worn rut of quasi-relevance: too effective for the Raiders to trade or release, not nearly accomplished enough for ‘elite quarterback’ talk-show prattle, and never interesting enough to roast for yuks and profit. Times have changed, however. The Raiders released Carr last week. The Jets are pursuing him in their quest for a quarterback who doesn’t claim that the dog ate his homework.”
How that pursuit ends is still to be determined. Either way, Carr is not ending up in the Hall of Fame.