NFL

Carr: Chargers defeat can act as wake-up call for Raiders

By Sports Desk October 05, 2021

Derek Carr believes Monday's 28-14 defeat to the Los Angeles Chargers can act as a wake-up call for his previously unbeaten Las Vegas Raiders.

The Raiders found themselves 21-0 down at half-time before quarterback Carr landed two third-quarter touchdowns to narrow to gap to one score.

But the Chargers steadied with an Austin Ekeler rushing touchdown before Carr had a last-ditch attempt intercepted by Derwin James, confirming the result.

The defeat means the Raiders drop below the Chargers in the AFC West division, with both sides holding 3-1 records.

Las Vegas had beaten the Miami Dolphins, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens across the first three weeks in a strong start to the new season.

"It's better now [to lose] than later," Carr told reporters after the defeat. "If anything, it hopefully wakes us up a little bit.

"You never want to lose but it's hard to win in this league. We'll see them again."

Carr, who tops the NFL charts for pass yards at 1,399 this season ahead of Tom Brady on 1356, had a subdued first half as Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert completed three touchdown passes.

The Raiders quarterback finished the game completing 21 of 34 attempts for 196 yards and two touchdowns, along with the one interception, and accepted the blame for the defeat.

"I want to see us win every time," Carr added. "Any loss is disappointing. This one hurts a bit extra.

"They can blame me. They can put it all on me. If they want to chant MVP when I come running out, they can get mad at me for this one."

The Chargers win was their fifth straight victory against an AFC West opponent and bolsters their case as genuine contenders in the division.

Los Angeles are top ahead of the Raiders (3-1), the Denver Broncos (3-1) and the Kansas City Chiefs (2-2).

"We're coming together," Chargers head coach Brandon Stanley told the post-game news conference. "That's the way we expect to play around here.

"It's not easy, because the teams we're playing are really, really good. You've seen what Dallas is doing, you've seen what Kansas City is doing, these teams are real opponents. That's a real opponent that we just played.

"I feel like our guys are coming together. We're finding that sweet spot within the game plan of how much is in the plan and getting these guys in their comfort zone. I felt like our guys were in the comfort zone tonight and we executed that way."

The Chargers face the Cleveland Browns on Sunday in Week 5 while the Raiders meet the Chicago Bears.

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