ALAMEDA, Calif. — His brother, David, was the backup to Eli Manning on the Giants who rarely played. Now, as fate and fable would have it, Derek Carr of the Oakland Raiders will be the first to play quarterback against the Giants since Manning was replaced as starter.
“I know this about Eli,” Carr said. “He’s a great person. I was able to learn from him a couple of years ago at the Pro Bowl. I was fortunate and blessed to be on that same team as him. Just learn from him, ask questions, all of those things.”
The question asked by the media at training camp Wednesday as the Raiders prepared for Sunday’s game against the Giants at Oakland Coliseum, was what Carr thought about Manning being benched after 14 years. He didn’t provide a direct answer.
“My brother spent a lot of time with him, obviously,” Carr said.
David Carr, the first pick in the 2002 NFL Draft by the Houston Texans, was on the Giants for the 2008 and 2009 seasons, playing in seven games and throwing three touchdown passes. Then after a year on the San Francisco 49ers, Carr returned to the Giants for 2012. Although he never got to play he picked up a Super Bowl ring when the Giants defeated the Patriots.
When asked again about Manning’s benching, Derek Carr said, “That’s a question that I would love to answer in the offseason. I’d love to sit down, and we can even do that, talk about that.”
The 5-6 Raiders will be without their top two receivers as they host the 2-9 Giants.
“I’m focused,” Carr said. “I’m glad I don’t play defense. I play offense so I’m worried about their defense and their pass rush and all their good DBs and those linebackers.”
Raiders coach Jack Del Rio was an assistant with the Denver Broncos in 2012-14, when Peyton Manning was the quarterback.
“I have a lot of respect for the Manning family,” Del Rio said. “I’ve had the pleasure of having Peyton on the same team for a few years in Denver. I played against Peyton for a long time in that division. I know the family really well.
“It’s got to be a tough, tough deal. [Eli’s] one of the all-time greats. Two-time Super Bowl winner, very accomplished player. I have a soft spot for that.”
And the Raiders are wary forof the new starting QB, Geno Smith.
“We saw him back in ’15 here when he came in [with the Jets] and I think he had 40-plus throws in that game and completed a good number of them,” Del Rio said. “We know he’s very capable.”