Dec 21, 2013; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Fresno State Bulldogs quarterback Derek Carr (4) throws a pass against the Southern California Trojans in the Las Vegas Bowl at Sam Boyd Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Draft Profile: Derek Carr, QB Fresno State

Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr is one of the few big name quarterbacks in this year’s draft to play four years of college football.  But things get leveled out when you realize that Carr didn’t see the field much at all during his freshman year.

Despite that, Carr boasts some very impressive statistics during his time at Fresno State.  The team’s ability to pass the ball with ease was a highlight of their offense.  Some folks say that this was essentially “padding” Carr’s stats, but it really is just more opportunities to watch and evaluate him.

His combination of arm strength and accuracy will make him appealing to many teams in need of a quarterback.  However, his difficulty with making reads and his lack of familiarity with a pro style offense could be a major turnoff to many squads.  Carr would need to go to a team with a “quarterback guru” that can help him mature and develop as a quarterback.  He has all the physical tools necessary to succeed, just needs some guidance to be a success.

Here are his statistics over 4 years at Fresno State:

  • Jan 25, 2014; Mobile, AL, USA; South squad quarterback Derek Carr of Fresno State (4) walks off the field after throwing a touchdown pass to South squad tight end Crockett Gilmore of Colorado State (not pictured) against the North squad during the first quarter at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

    1087 pass completions

  • 1630 pass attempts
  • 12,843 passing yards
  • 113 passing touchdowns
  • 24 interceptions
  • 164 rushes
  • 190 rushing yards
  • 5 rushing touchdowns


  •  Huge throwing arm
  • Elusive in the pocket
  • Excellent with pre-snap reads
  • Keeps eyes downfield when scrambling


  •  Must adjust to a pro style offense
  • Struggles to go through progressions
  • Played poorly against higher levels of competition

Fit For The Vikings

Minnesota is desperate to find their quarterback of the future.  Or at least the quarterback of the now to compete with Ponder and a veteran in camp.

My Take

Carr is a good quarterback. but not an excellent quarterback.  Despite that, he is my second favorite passer in this year’s draft, behind only Bridgewater. The Vikings still can’t really consider taking him at #8 overall, but may take a look at him if the team can trade down in the draft to get more picks.

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Tags: Christian Ponder Derek Carr Minnesota Vikings

  • Kerry Elmberg jr

    Please vikings do not draft Carr unless u like losing

  • mike

    Frankly I’m not even sure about taking Bridgewater with our #8. The Vikings are at a point where they need more than one player and I don’t care who he is. As far as I can tell no one knows who’s going to be a big time star in the NFL. This is especially true at the qtb position. Let’s get some numbers. If there is a qtb available in the later rounds, take him. Who knows, the Vikings have as much of a chance of getting lucky as anybody else in the NFL crapshoot.

  • bjigler

    Carr has played in a pro-style offense before. He won’t have much of a learning curve.

  • 5150dogfan

    Any chance we can get writers to actually do a little research?????
    1. Carr has more expiernce in the Pro Set then he does the spread (3 of 5 years under Pat Hill in the pro set.)
    2. Besides the USC game, in which Carr was playing after seperating his shoulder in the prior game, (which Fresno won against a top 15 D) can you tell me exactly which game you were looking at where he struggled against better competition????
    Look, no doubt USC ran all over Fresno State, but you cant hang that on Carr alone…..The OC only ran the ball 6 times in the game….6 times, REALLY…..The D was just keying on the QB…..I dont care who you are when that is allowed to happen a QB is going to have a rough day…
    Even the best QB in league has bad games when a very good D is allowed to key on the QB and they refuse to run the ball much…..See Payton Manning vs. Seattle for clarification…..

    The guy throws for 50 TDs with only 8 ints, while facing higher ranked pass D’s then either Bridgewater or Manziel saw, Fresno had no running game so the D’s they were facing new they were going to be throwing the ball no real run game help like the other top QB’s had….then you look at Carr’s stats which DESTROY Bridgewater and Bortles against the same team (Rutgers)…..Yeah Carr sure struggled through progressions, I mean look at all those pics…….C’mon

    What ever team Carr goes to is getting one heck of a football player………

    • Adam B. Carlson

      You are right. He has taken quite a few snaps from a pro style formation. But they seemed rushed to me. Although he still maintained a high completion percentage, he needs to slow down on his drops and take time to make reads.
      However, like I said in the article, he is my second favorite quarterback in the draft. And that speaks very highly for him and his abilities. All of his “problems” are things that are very coachable. He could be a huge asset to a team. That’s why I’m a fan of his.
      For the games I saw against tough competition where he struggled, I was talking about games like the USC game you mentioned and 2011 vs Boise State. Struggling doesn’t mean failing or throwing interceptions. Perhaps it’s just an incomplete pass or pass that is thrown away when a read isn’t there.
      I do quite a bit of research on all these draft profiles, and although I do get people who disagree with me, it’s nice to have a reply that really talked about the issues rather than just call me a name or make fun of the site. I work hard on these.
      Thanks for taking the time to read and reply to this post. I can definitely see Carr being successful at the next level and if he can do it for the Vikings, I’ll love it even more.

      • 5150dogfan

        Thanks fot the response Adam,
        BSU 2011 (Pretty Good D) was a long time ago….But will say this, Carr would be the first one to tell you he has areas that need work, (as do all players coming out of college.)
        Sorry if I stepped on your toes a bit, it just seems that many writers seem to just be looking for something wrong with this kids game and then back it up with non supported issues……..
        Is Carr perfect? NO, but IMHO he is much better then most give hime credit for……And in your defense you do see it too in the fact that you think he is the number #2 QB……
        Anyways thanks for your response.
        btw-Did you see Devante Adams in any of the film…..Very impressive WR….