Sports News

Raiders, Derek Carr ridiculed for first-and-goal spike in wild-card playoff loss to Bengals

Derek Carr may want a spiked drink after this debacle.

Carr and the Raiders were driving to tie or win the game against the Bengals late in the fourth quarter Saturday, and they were in striking distance: Following clutch throws to Darren Waller and Zay Jones, Carr and the Raiders were set up with a first-and-goal from the Bengals’ 9-yard line.

Something strange happened on that first down: Instead of taking a shot at the end zone, Carr spiked the ball, stopping the clock but, more importantly, costing the Raiders a down and an opportunity for six points.

MORE: How Peyton Barber cost his team 38 yards on botched kickoff return

Though the clock was ticking, it certainly would have made sense to give the offense as many opportunities at the end zone as possible. If the pass is incomplete, then the clock is stopped and the team loses seven or eight seconds. 

For what it’s worth, former Saints quarterback and current NBC color commentator Drew Brees said he would have considered spiking the ball as well. Brees’ reasoning: make sure that the offense was aligned in how it would attack the end zone on potentially the final three snaps of the game. 

MORE: Raiders-Bengals highlights

Spike or not, it was all for naught: After a pair of incompletions, Carr threw a game-ending interception on fourth down that gave the Bengals their first playoff win in over three decades, 26-19 in Cincinnati.

Carr’s decision to spike the ball was met with heavy criticism from viewers:

The Bengals advance to the divisional round; they await their opponent. The Raiders advance to their nearest golf courses.

MORE: NFL playoff bracket: Scores, schedule