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Derek Carr is 'special young talent,' says Jack Del Rio

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One day after new defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. gushed over linebacker Khalil Mack's potential, coach Jack Del Rio offered high praise for the Oakland Raiders' building block on the other side of the ball.

Appearing on Monday's edition of The Jim Rome Show, Del Rio left no doubt that second-year quarterback Derek Carr is more than just a developmental project.

"Carr's a special young talent," Del Rio said. "He's got a really quick release, good decision-maker; he's shown some of that grit we're looking for, some of that toughness, so he's a guy that we feel like we have an opportunity to build around."

Although Carr struggled to create big plays with an underwhelming wide receiver corps, he impressed teammates and convinced scouts and executives around the league that his future is bright.

The Raiders' roster has come a long way since last offseason, when general manager Reggie McKenzie offered up tight end Mychal Rivera as an example of a nucleus player.

McKenzie's 2014 draft class had more impact than that of any other team, which is why the organization firmly believes a foundation for success is finally in place.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast breaks down the top 25 free agents and reacts to the latest news. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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