Raiders benching Derek Carr, giving Jarrett Stidham first career start in Week 17

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Raiders benching Carr, giving Stidham first career start in Week 17 originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

Las Vegas Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels is making a big change at quarterback for the final two weeks of the 2022 NFL regular season.

McDaniels told reporters Wednesday that he is benching Derek Carr and will start backup Jarrett Stidham in Week 17 against the San Francisco 49ers and Week 18 versus the Kansas City Chiefs -- both at home.

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The Raiders own a 6-9 record and still have a chance to make the playoffs in the AFC, but those odds are miniscule, partly because the 49ers and Chiefs are two of the league's best teams.

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This decision means Stidham will make the first start of his career on Sunday. Stidham was a 2020 fourth-round draft pick of the New England Patriots and the Raiders acquired him via trade back in May. The former Auburn star has thrown just 61 passes in his pro career. He's completed eight of 13 pass attempts in limited snaps over three appearances with the Raiders this season.

Carr has not played particularly well in 2022. He has completed just 60.8 percent of his passes -- the lowest of his career outside of his 2014 rookie campaign. Carr also leads the league with 14 interceptions, and he was picked off three times in a 13-10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 16. He has been intercepted nine times in the last five games.

While benching Carr makes sense based on his performance, it's also a smart move for the Raiders in regards to maintaining his trade value for the offseason. The Raiders will have a decision to make with Carr in the coming months, as ESPN's Field Yates and Jeremy Fowler detail below:

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Carr has proven he's not a Super Bowl-caliber quarterback, so it would be smart of the Raiders to explore other options after the 2022 season concludes.