49ers news: Biggest winners, losers of Seahawks Russell Wilson trade

Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders
Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports /

Loser: Derek Carr and the Raiders

What the Las Vegas Raiders did last season in the wake of former head coach Jon Gruden’s dismissal and the tragedy involving wide receiver Henry Ruggs was more than just admirable.

It was storybook, the Raiders getting into the playoffs despite those controversies.

Quarterback Derek Carr, long maligned after a lengthy stretch of merely OK play the last few seasons, also played exceptionally well as a team leader, helping his Raiders finish the regular season with four consecutive wins, a 10-7 regular-season finish and a trip into the postseason.

For all of Carr’s heroics, though, he still has to be regarded as trailing other AFC West quarterbacks like Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert.

Now, with Russell Wilson in the division, Carr is easily the fourth-best quarterback within the division.

The AFC West is experiencing an arms race right now, and Carr certainly will need to start playing at a level Raiders fans simply haven’t seen over the course of his career if Las Vegas is to keep the pace with Wilson and the Broncos, Mahomes and the Chiefs, and Herbert and the Chargers.

While there are still plenty of factors yet to be determined, an early assessment might point to Carr and the Raiders poised to replace Denver as the fourth-best team within the AFC West.