Filed for print . . .
Derek Carr strode confidently to the line to take his first snap from center as a quarterback for the Raiders . . . and fumbled it.
“Any time a play doesn’t work I’m not happy,’’ Carr said after the Raiders had completed the first of five practice sessions over three days for their draft class, undrafted free agents and a handful of players invited on a tryout basis.
Carr, who seldom took a snap from under center in his last two years at Fresno State, had two more issues with exchanges before the day was done. He wore the No.4 of his idol, Brett Favre, but wasn’t taking the chances of a gun-slinger, throwing mostly short, accurate passes while learning a new offense.
“There were no nerves, man, Carr said. “When it comes to football, it’s fun. I was excited to finally get out and play football instead of getting in your underwear and running a 40 (yard dash).’’
A sizeable contingent of the media was from the Fresno area, where Carr’s selection by the Raiders in the second round at No. 36 is the biggest thing going. Many of the questions posed to coach Dennis Allen had to do with Carr’s spot in the pecking order and whether he could challenge Matt Schaub as the starter.
Allen made it clear Schaub was acquired to start, but at the same time wasn’t placing any limitations on Carr or what he could achieve as a rookie.
“We’re going to let him go out and compete and see how things work out,’’ Allen said. “You can’t have enough good quarterbacks in this league. You never know when injuries are going to occur, and you’ve got to be prepared for that.’’
– Running back George Atkinson III put on the uniform of the team he had worshipped his entire life without his father looking over his shoulder. Former Raider safety and team broadcaster George Atkinson stayed away by design.
“He told me yesterday, `I’m not going to come out. I know you’re expecting me to come but this is your moment and you need to be a man about it as an individual and I’m not going to be here to pressure you,’’ Atkinson III said.“He’ll have a chance to come out and see me.’’
– Linebacker Khalil Mack took most of his defensive snaps on the right side but was also moved around to other spots as well, much as Allen promised on draft day.
– Defensive end Shelby Harris, who missed last season after being dismissed from the team at Illinois State, showed a good burst to the outside but one play misjudged an angle allowing Carr to sprint past him on the outside.
– Third-round draft pick Kevin McGill nearly had an interception of Carr but couldn’t hold it. The deflection then went to safety Jonathan Dowling, a third-round pick. Dowling also dropped the ball.
– There were a handful of undrafted free agents who were invited for tryouts, with the Raiders declining to confirm their names or positions.
One of them was Boise State quarterback Joe Southwick, the former San Ramon Valley High star, who got reps with Carr.
– Free agent defensive tackle Antonio Smith, who incurred an injury while weight-lifting on May 9 and had surgery on a body part that was not disclosed, will miss some of the offseason but Allen said he hopes to get him on the field during OTAs or the mandatory minicamp.