Derek Carr Rookie Card Guide
Certainly not overlooked coming out of college, it was still easy for Derek Carr to be lost in the shuffle for rookie collectors thanks to other popular quarterbacks like Johnny Manziel, Blake Bortles and Teddy Bridgewater. However, Derek Carr has been named the opening game starter for the Oakland Raiders and hobby excitement is starting to build around the young quarterback.
After an impressive high school career, Derek Carr played college football at Fresno State. Starting for three seasons, Carr boosted his stats each season and also increased the team's win totals, culminating with an 11-win season during 2013 in which he threw 50 touchdown passes and only eight interceptions. Following his senior year, Carr declared for the 2014 NFL Draft.
No stranger to high expectations, Derek Carr followed his brother's path to Fresno State and then the NFL. Older brother David Carr was the top overall pick by the Houston Texans in the 2002 NFL Draft. Chosen to lead the newly created franchise to NFL success, David Carr struggled during his time as the starter and is no longer in the league.
The fourth quarterback off the board, Derek Carr was selected early in the second round by the Oakland Raiders. Despite this, there was no expected quarterback controversy as the team had traded for Matt Schaub before the draft. Coincidentally, Schaub was the former starter for the Houston Texans. Oakland has struggled to find their quarterback of the future, fielding many players at the position in the last few years, including Matt Flynn, Terrelle Pryor, Carson Palmer and Jason Campbell. Although Carr was expected to eventually compete for the starting spot, Schaub was intended to be the clear starter. This remained the case until the final preseason game. Coming off the bench against Seattle, Carr threw three touchdown passes on only 13 attempts. Soon after, he was named the new starting quarterback.
While it is not unheard of for a second round pick to start the first game of his rookie season, it is not exactly common, happening only three times since 2002. This is made more significant for collectors as Derek Carr was the only rookie quarterback to start week one. Time will tell if David Carr can actually succeed in the NFL, but the hobby will watch with great anticipation to see what the rookie can do.
The following guide looks at all true rookie cards for Derek Carr in 2014 products. It does not include the various inserts and autographs that can also be found
Derek Carr Rookie Card Guide
Not the ideal option for collectors given the unlicensed look, the main appeal of 2014 Bowman is the early availability. Long-term interest will be minimal at best for this Derek Carr rookie card.
The gray/silver background combined with the colors of the Raiders makes for a rather bland 2014 Finest card. This is especially surprising from Finest, a product known for vivd colors and designs. The many Refractor parallels give this Derek Carr rookie a needed color boost.
The sticker is not ideal but 2014 Certified is anything but boring. With a shiny surface, medium jersey piece and limited print run, this Derek Carr rookie should remain a solid budget autograph.
Heavy foil and a limited print run makes this 2014 Elite rookie card for Derek Carr an intriguing budget option. One of the earliest cards to showcase the young QB in his official Raiders gear, this card should maintain decent interest.
Similar to Bowman, 2014 Panini Hot Rookies goes the airbrushed route. When combined with the sideline shot of Carr, it is really tough to think of this rookie card as anything more than the disappointment evident on Carr's face.
An unfortunately common example of re-using images, 2014 Hot Rookies, Score and Prestige all showcase the same underwhelming shot of Derek Carr. On a positive note for collectors, variations, like the one shown on the right, offer a more legitimate look at the rookie gunslinger. However, Carr is not wearing his actual #4 jersey.
Another solid early rookie card for Derek Carr, 2014 Rookies and Stars portrays a very similar image to Elite. The simple card is nothing more than a budget base rookie but collectors could do much worse.
2014 Score is known as the low-end product in the Panini arsenal, but even this attempt seems to come up short. With so much white in the design, it is hard to imagine you are looking at an NFL card.
The base rookie card from the flagship 2014 Topps football product includes Carr at practice. Again, not the ideal image, but is better than a heavily photoshopped card. The base card features a pre-throw image while a rare variation includes a tighter post-throw shot.
The first official autographed rookie card for Derek Carr was released in 2014 Topps Inception. The distinct look, on-card signature and limited print run will keep it popular with colectors. One small knock against it is the "00" jersey. Although it was not officially confirmed by Topps, Carr's rookie appears to be one of the short prints, with the most common green option numbered to just 99.
Notable Derek Carr College and Pre-Rookie Cards
Technically a 2013 card despite releasing well into 2014, the premium Upper Deck product includes a special autographed insert set highlighting some of the top 2014 rookies. The 2013 Exquisite card includes an on-card signatures, limited print run and familiar Exquisite design.
Collectors from the 1990s should immediately recognize the distinct look of Flair Showcase. Utilizing much of what made the design popular with collectors, 2014 Flair Showcase includes three card tiers for Derek Carr. Each tier is known as a Row and the as the Row numbers decrease, the rarity increases.
Thanks to some of their impressive product releases in recent years, Leaf has emerged as a viable early option for football collectors. Among the favorites, this jumbo patch autograph from 2014 Trinity includes a large jersey patch and on-card autograph.
Also found in 2014 Trinity, this Pure Autograph is made of glass and signed on-card. The unique Derek Carr card has proven to be very popular with collectors.
The large star might be a bit distracting, but this simple card from 2014 Leaf Valiant applies color, chromium and Carr to make an intriguing pre-rookie card. In addition to multiple color parallels, there is also a signed On-Target Signatures card for Derek Carr available in the product.
In classic UD style, the 2014 SPx design combines a lot on one card, bordering on busy. The college themed David Carr card offers a sticker signature, lower print run and plain jersey piece.
While the college focus might not be a favorite for some collectors, the photography for Derek Carr in 2014 Upper Deck captures a a real sense of in-game action. The card on the right is a special retail short print.
2014 Topps Derek Carr Rare Sp Short Print Rookie Card
2014 PRESTIGE PRESTIGIOUS PICKS #11 DEREK CARR
2014 DONRUSS ELITE RC #131 DEREK CARR 601 999
2014 ROOKIES AND STARS #131 DEREK CARR