The older brother of Raiders’ quarterback Derek Carr said moving on from coach Jon Gruden was a necessary step for the organization.
“This was something that you weren’t going to be able to work through with Jon in the building,” former NFL quarterback David Carr said in his analyst role on NFL Network. “I really think that.”
The elder Carr made clear he was sharing his own thoughts on the situation, not those that Derek relayed to him during their conversation.
“I just know it was going to be very difficult to work through this without him being a distraction,” he added. “Regardless of an apology or whatever, those words are still there and there would always be that question of how he really feels. Where are you really at with this?”
David Carr has watched Raiders’ games religiously since his brother was drafted by the team in 2014.
He believes the team’s lackluster performance in Sunday’s loss to the Bears at Allegiant Stadium can at least be partially attributed to the news of Gruden’s offensive emails first surfacing 48 hours before kickoff.
“If you watched the game against Chicago the other day, you can’t tell me the players on the field weren’t thinking about that in some way,” David Carr said. “The team just felt out of sorts. There was definitely a distraction going on, so the positive thing is that distraction hopefully is now gone. After they address it with the media and go through the first couple days of this, they’ll be able to get back to work and focus on other things.”
Carr confirmed his younger brother plans to discuss the situation during his usual Wednesday news conference with the media. He said Derek Carr spoke with Gruden after news broke of his resignation and planned to visit with him at home. Derek Carr and Gruden are neighbors.
“This is a very difficult situation because they aren’t just coach and player,” David Carr said. “You develop a bond where you’re friends with this person and your families know each other. I’ll let Derek speak for himself when he talks to the media, but I know Derek’s heart. When he says he loves everyone in that building, he really means it.
“Derek cares more about Jon as a person and going forward than he does about him as a football coach. That’s where his heart is and who he is as a person. He wants Jon to see the error of his ways and make it right and work on himself.
“That’s the views Derek was expressing to me, that he really cares about Jon as a person and being able to move past this.”
David believes the football part of things will be just fine. Derek Carr has worked with offensive coordinator Greg Olson, who will now call plays, for long enough to be comfortable together in a system in which they are both very familiar.
The bigger concern for Derek Carr is making sure everyone is on the same page despite the absence of the man who had his fingerprints on every decision made by the organization for the last four years.
“The hard part about it is he has to go to work tomorrow and prepare for a football game and he has to rally a locker room and get guys to buy into whatever game plan they put together with Greg Olson and the staff and kind of move forward and get away from the distraction that was this situation,” David Carr said.
“That’s not easy, because as terrible as the things Jon wrote in the email were and how hurtful the words were to not only people outside the building but inside, they still have to push forward and find a way to play a football game and he still has to find a way to be the quarterback of this team.”
Interim coach Rich Bisaccia is also expected to address the media for the first time on Wednesday.