Derek Carr is a free agent after the Las Vegas Raiders released the veteran quarterback earlier this offseason after nine seasons with the team. Undoubtedly, the signal caller will be sought after by plenty of franchises looking for a veteran to stabilize their quarterback situation.
Whether you believe in Carr’s potential, some team is going to take a shot and bring him in. If they do, will he be a good fit for the team? And from a betting standpoint, will the signing make them title contenders?
I like his fit on three teams and do believe there might be some value in grabbing their futures now.
Here are my favorite potential landing spots for the Fresno State alum, with odds via FOX Bet.
If I were selecting the next team for Carr, the Panthers would be the preferred destination. Carolina would instantly become the favorite in the weak NFC South because the rest of the division is poor at quarterback and devoid of favorable options. The addition of a quarterback with his abilities almost guarantees the Panthers a playoff berth, something Carr has only done twice with the Raiders.
The Panthers hired former Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich because of his ability to coach quarterbacks. Reich’s personality and religious backbone pairs well with Carr, who shares that spiritual connection. Additionally, the Panthers added former Colts and Detroit Lions Head Coach Jim Caldwell to the staff, and his disposition also meshes well with the low-key quarterback.
On the field, Carolina has a young offensive line that can add another strong piece in the NFL Draft. And, defensively, this would be the best unit Carr has ever played with.
After years of uncertainty under center, he would bring a level of stability the fan base would love. This would be a great fit for both parties.
If you believe in the pairing, the Panthers are currently +6000 to win the Super Bowl at FOX Bet. This number will shorten if he signs with Carolina.
Would Derek Carr make the New York Jets a playoff team?
Eric Mangini discusses whether Derek Carr would make the New York Jets a playoff team.
The New York Jets provide Carr the best opportunity to win at the highest level, as they have the best roster of any team pursuing the free-agent quarterback.
The Jets have playmakers at all three levels. The dynamic Garrett Wilson is at receiver, Breece Hall is returning from injury at running back, and, if their offensive line can return healthy, it’s an underrated line that should end the season as a top-10 unit.
The new offensive coordinator is a Shanahan guy, so the play designs should allow Carr to find some easy throws while relying on the run game to shoulder the offensive load. This would certainly be an improvement from what he dealt with last season.
However, there are three negatives with New York, and it’s why I have them listed second. The Big Apple media and Derek Carr’s personalities don’t seem to mesh. Carr is understated, and the Jets media is, let’s say, not. I could have the wrong read on this, but people I trust have echoed the same beliefs.
Secondly, the Jets are courting Aaron Rodgers. Does Carr want to wait for Rodgers to make his decision before deciding where to play in the future? Does he want to be the second option for the Jets through this entire process?
Lastly, taking the Jets job is a tougher gig than Carolina. Would you rather play in the NFC South or in a division with Buffalo, New England and Miami? Let alone a conference with Patrick Mahomes, Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert, Trevor Lawrence and Lamar Jackson.
If your goal is winning a Super Bowl, it seems the option with less resistance would be in the NFC conference. That being said, on paper, Carr to the Jets would make them a legitimate playoff contender and if everything aligns, a potential Super Bowl contender.
The Jets currently sit at +2800 to win the Super Bowl at FOX Bet. This number will dip for sure if the team signs Carr or Aaron Rodgers.
I’m adding the Saints here because NOLA’s interest in Carr appears high. The Saints had the quarterback in for a lengthy visit before he was released from the Raiders. They were hoping to work out a trade agreement, so they could land the signal caller before he hit free agency.
The Saints fit doesn’t feel as natural as the first two options on this list. The team is always pushing up against the cap, and it’s hurting their ability to keep some of their talented players. Wide receiver Michael Thomas is unlikely to be on the roster as a result, but the Saints do have Chris Olave.
The offensive line is good enough, and the defense would again be the best Carr has ever played with, as any defense outside of Vegas would be better than the Raiders. I just don’t see this pairing as one of my favorites, but if he lands there, the team will improve.
You can grab the Saints at +4000 to win it all at FOX Bet.
Geoff Schwartz played eight seasons in the NFL for five different teams. He started at right tackle for the University of Oregon for three seasons and was a second-team All-Pac-12 selection his senior year. He is an NFL analyst for FOX Sports. Follow him on Twitter at @GeoffSchwartz.
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