Derek Carr is first and foremost the Las Vegas Raiders starting quarterback, but golf in Nevada is helping him relax and bond with coaches and teammates.–By Brian Hurlburt, Founder, LasVegasGolfInsider.com
“Las Vegas has a lot of really good golf courses and some of the best that I’ve played and there’s like 50 of them,” Carr said recently during an American Century Championship media call. “It’s been a lot of fun playing some of them. I haven’t even played them all because I’ve been here (only) two and a half years. A cool thing for me is taking my boys out to Southern Highlands and watching them grow in loving in the game.”
Carr is in the field for the 2022 American Century Championship at Edgewood in Lake Tahoe July 8-10, an event that lures the top golfing athletes, celebrities and entertainers annually. Others playing include Patrick Mahomes, Charles Barkley, Aaron Rodgers, Steph Curry, Annika Sorenstam and many more.
Carr has spent a lot of time in the Tahoe area including watching his brother, David, play in the event several years ago. Derek followed his brother’s footsteps as a college and NFL player. Now both are in the field.
“I have a lot of memories in Tahoe, especially from when I was a kid and walked around with my brother and met a lot of really cool people like Jerry Rice for the first time,” Carr said. “Then years later Jerry Rice picked me for his Pro Bowl team. He’s like, ‘man, I remember you when you were a kid at Tahoe.’ I have a lot of cool memories and now they have come full circle. Edgewood is a beautiful course and it is a wonderful area.”
While Carr, who finished 30th in 2021, probably won’t win the golf title in 2022 either, he just might pick up a little extra cash along the way, albeit by using his football skills on the course.
“Last year, some guy on the 17th hole bet me a hundred bucks that he could throw a golf ball farther than me,” Carr said. “I was like, ‘come on out.’ I had no cash in my pocket, so that just shows you the confidence I had in the golf-ball-throwing skills of that man. He threw it a good 70 yards, but I ended up taking his money.”
Pretty much as soon as the Tahoe event concludes, Carr will be back in Vegas getting ready for the 2022-23 season with new coach Josh McDaniels. The two have played golf together and the bonding on the course and on the field is going well.
“Josh is a good golfer; he hits the ball straight and he can swing the club,” Carr says. “As far as football, I’ve been very impressed with Josh. He’s been around that (New England Patriots’) system and that way of doing things, but one thing Josh has done is he’s come in and said, ‘this is not new England. This is Las Vegas. We’re gonna do things our way. I learned a lot of great things there that we’re gonna implement, but I also have some things that I want to do my way.’ The team has just wrapped their arms around him and listened to his leadership.”