Derek Carr making a name for himself at Senior Bowl

Stacy Revere

The Fresno State quarterback wants to start from Day 1, and he's putting in the work to get there.

Mobile, Ala.: At the conclusion practices at the Senior Bowl on Monday, Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr remained on the field. As his teammates from the South team spoke with the media and signed autographs for the fans, Carr took up residency in the red zone throwing extra passes to Vanderbilt wide receiver Jordan Matthews.

On Tuesday, Carr's personal practice time extended 20 minutes past the final whistle of the day. But now his receiver group had grown. Joining Matthews were Mike Davis of Texas and Cody Hoffman of BYU. Matthews took the left side of the field, as Davis and Hoffman went back and forth on the right side.

A corner fade to Hoffman looked simple. When Davis said he'd go five yards and out, Carr got rid of the football before the Texas senior could even turn his head around. Matthews came across the end zone in full stride and Carr hit him low, just as he wanted it.

On a windy day at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, one pass Carr didn't throw hard picked up some wind and narrowly floated past Davis. Despite all the stick throws, this is the one that will bother Carr until he throws to his new teammates again on Wednesday.

"I get so mad when I miss a throw because I expect to make every throw," Carr said afterward. "That's not realistic, but I put unrealistic expectations on myself because I think I can do it. I kinda get upset with myself, but I know the next one is going to be on point."

Carr isn't doing the extra work just to impress the group of NFL scouts that gathered around to watch his after-practice session. Nor is he doing it to get on NFL Network, which airs Senior Bowl practices. It's something Carr does after every practice to get better.

"He's done a nice job," Jacksonville Jaguars and South coach Gus Bradley said. "He's bright, attentive. It just depends what you're looking for at quarterback. He's got a lot of great traits I've seen in just the two days."

Of the six quarterbacks in Mobile, Carr has looked the best. His arm is the strongest, he's the most consistent from play to play and his accuracy has often been on point. If Carr is to be a first-round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, he's not hurting his chances at practices.

Of course, he won't be the person in his family to have his name called in the first round of the draft. His older brother David Carr was picked No. 1 in the 2002 draft by the Houston Texans, owners of this year's top choice. The elder Carr starred when he participated in the Senior Bowl and is helping his younger brother prepare for the draft.

"It's such an advantage. What a resource. What an advantage to have," Derek Carr said. "I've seen it all. I've seen a lot. I've seen the cheers and I've seen boos. I've seen a lot of things 12- and the 13-year-olds don't get to see."

He saw his brother get beat up in Houston before bouncing around to four other teams and getting released by the New York Giants in August.

"I mean, your brother was the No. 1 pick in the draft," Jaguars offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch said. "I don't want to say there's pressure, but expectations maybe a little bit. Both good and bad.

"The goal for him is to go out there and be Derek Carr and have your own identity. You certainly see he's one to commit to the game. You see it in the meeting rooms and on the practice field; the effort he puts forward for us. His physical tool set seems to be good."

While he's trying to be his own player, there is one thing Carr does want to do the same as his older brother. That's start from Day 1 for whatever team drafts him.

"Absolutely I think I can (from Day 1)," Carr said. "There is no doubt in my mind I think I can come in and help a team win games. I'm not going to come in and save a franchise. I'm going to come in and help win games and championships alongside my teammates."

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