Citizens of the Raider Nation who flooded Centre Plaza to hear Derek and David Carr talk football got plenty of that, and more.
The NFL quarterback brothers – Derek with the Raiders, of course, and David now an NFL Network analyst after playing with the Texans, Panthers, 49ers and Giants – also spoke during the Chalk Talk program Friday night about two other F’s that matter even more to them: faith and family.
Football doesn’t define him, said Derek, adding that his identity is in Christ. In the midst of a losing streak, “someone (in the media) once said to me, ‘Is this season ruining you?’ ” he said. “I laughed at him. I said, ‘Absolutely not. If anything it’s making me stronger.’ When I’m weak, He’s strong.”
When defeat is threatening to bring you down, he said, you “man up and power through with the grace of God.”
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Both brothers and former Fresno State football stars have tattoos of “Christ” written in Greek. Derek also has “Jeremiah 29:11” on his other arm. “So go ahead, kids, go get a tattoo,” David said jokingly.
The Carrs at times were interviewed by KWIN radio personality Lucas and at other times simply talked about their lives and their love of the game.
My job is to keep him humble.
David Carr, on how he treats younger brother Derek
Growing up, their father would record quarterbck greats including Dan Marino and John Elway on VHS tapes, David recalled. “We would watch them and go out back and emulate them.”
When David saw Derek, who’s 12 years younger, throw a football at age 3, he said, “He’s going to be a quarterback.” So he knew he had to make Derek tough, David said, and had to humble him in things like “Madden” and in basketball.
“My job is to keep him humble,” David said to the crowd of fans. “You build him up – he gets enough of that.”
Keeping humble appears no problem for Derek, who stressed that teamwork is everything. “Everyone wears the quarterback’s jersey, everyone cheers for him,” he said. Pointing to a screen displaying a paused video, he added, “But without this offensive line, I’d be nothing. … Your favorite players should be these five in front of me.”
Derek repeatedly praised the talent and dedication of teammates including wide receivers Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree. Of the latter, he remarked, “Thank you, 49ers, for letting him go. I really appreciate it.”
The brothers spent time breaking down for the fans some Raiders highlight videos played on a screen. As they began, David told the audience what they used to tell their mom. “This room,” he said, gesturing to the large auditorium, “is our football knowledge.” What they’d share with the fans was the equivalent of a tiny piece of lint in a pocket.
To do more wasn’t feasible because so much goes into every play. “That’s the crazy thing about our game, there’s so much more than meets the eye,” Derek said.
Talking about defenses he’s come up against, he added, “I have notes on all these guys, but I’m not going to share my secrets. You wouldn’t want me to share my secrets.”
I want to play here forever. There is no secret about that. I’m a Raider.
Before giving away two signed Raiders jerseys and several signed footballs in a raffle drawing, the brothers took audience questions.
“How’s your leg?” a fan asked. Derek suffered a broken right fibula during his team’s Dec. 24 win over the Indianapolis Colts.
“It’s good, man,” the quarterback replied, demonstrating with a bit of footwork on stage. “It’s good, I promise,” he added. saying that earlier Friday while playing pingpong with family, he was able to jump and touch a 10-foot ceiling.
Another fan, a woman suffering breast cancer and facing surgery, asked if Derek would pray for her. “Of course,” he replied, saying that he’d arrange to meet her after Chalk Talk.
“We want you to be a Raider for life,” another audience member said. “When can we expect that extension?”
It’s being worked on, Derek said, adding, “I want to play here forever. There is no secret about that. I’m a Raider.”
Deke Farrow: 209-578-2327