Raiders' Derek Carr Honoring Kobe Bryant with Armband: 'He Meant so Much to Me'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 4, 2020

Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr in action during the first half of an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers in Carson, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019. (AP Photo/Kelvin Kuo)
Kelvin Kuo/Associated Press

Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr will wear an armband on his left arm as a tribute to Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, who died in a helicopter crash in January.

Las Vegas Raiders @Raiders

"He meant so much to me." @derekcarrqb will wear an arm band this year as a tribute to the late Kobe Bryant. https://t.co/iJKr16LuYs

Especially later in his career, Bryant often wore a large sleeve on his right arm, making it one of his most identifiable accessories.

"Watched every game he played. He meant so much to me," Carr said of Bryant, per The Athletic's Vic Tafur. "When he followed me on Twitter, it was one of the best days of my life. Then I got to know him. ... It's all about that Mamba Mentality."

During a 2016 appearance on The Herd with Colin Cowherd, Carr explained how he sought to emulate Bryant's competitive nature:

Herd w/Colin Cowherd @TheHerd

Where does Derek Carr's competitiveness come from? @derekcarrqb: "To be completely honest, it was from watching @kobebryant." https://t.co/EUT7fiw4MO

Shortly after Bryant's death, Carr shared a video of the 18-time All-Star hitting two free throws with what was later confirmed to be a torn Achilles. He wrote in the caption: "That mentality has inspired so many including myself in a huge way."

Carr alluded to how he'd carry on Kobe's legacy by displaying the same kind of toughness and determination in his own endeavors.