The Las Vegas Raiders were officially eliminated from the playoffs in heartbreaking fashion during their 26-25 loss to the Miami Dolphins in Week 16.
The Raiders were already in a must-win situation heading into the week after losing four of their previous five games. They were seemingly on the verge of keeping their playoff hopes alive after securing a 25-23 lead with 19 seconds left to play.
Unfortunately, it was just enough time to allow the Dolphins to march into field goal range and escape with an unlikely victory. Meanwhile, the Raiders are left with more questions than answers going into the 2020 NFL season finale.
Quarterback Derek Carr admits that such a loss is a tough pill to swallow for both the team and fans alike, per Levi Edwards of the team’s official website:
“To watch it go like that, I’m sick for our organization. I’m sick for our defense. I’m sick for our team,” said quarterback Derek Carr, who played through a groin injury sustained last week against the Chargers. “I feel sick for all those guys. My heart feels for them. My heart feels for our fans to watch and to be so excited and we take the lead, and then it’s gone.”
Carr added that these experiences are ideal opportunities to learn and bounce back from and he still believes the team has a bright future:
“There’s a lot of young guys on this team, and it sucks to say, but we’re building something,” said Carr. “Sometimes you have to do that with young pieces, and for us old guys, sometimes things can get a bit frustrating, but I’ve been there. I’ve been in their shoes.
“I’ve had plenty of highs, plenty of lows in this league just like everybody, and crap happens in the NFL. What you can’t change is your attitude and the way you come in to work everyday.”
It is difficult to find the silver lining in another epic second-half season collapse for the Raiders. Regardless, Carr is doing what he can to stay optimistic as the team prepares to close the chapter on another disappointing season.
It is safe to say that Carr did all he could to lead by example. Despite sustaining a significant groin injury during the loss to the Los Angeles Chargers last week, he was adamant about making his return with playoff hopes still alive.
While the Raiders may no longer be in contention, Carr is clearly making efforts to maintain his positive approach in the locker room. This is part of what has made him an ideal leader for this team as they continue to reflect on where things went wrong this season.