The Oakland Raiders lose to the New Orleans Saints 38-17, in what appeared to be an uninvited shootout.
Sunday’s game mirrored the same type of performance that took place against the Baltimore Ravens just a week ago. The game was decided by the middle of the 3rd quarter, Raiders’ QB Carson Palmer statistically had another great game, and by the end of the day Raider Nation seemed more bewildered and confused than ever before.
For the game, Palmer ended up with 312 passing yards, two touchdowns (and two interceptions). Fullback Marcel Reece, had the game of his life, racking up a 109 yards on the ground to go along with 90 receiving yards. Yet both of these big performances went for not, as they are clearly misleading to what actually took place yesterday afternoon for the Silver and Black. The Saints looked like a well oiled machine, and the Raiders didn’t, simple and plain. Palmer threw an interception late in the first quarter that put them in a 14-0 hole, and from that point on it was murder she wrote.
Offensively, the Raiders have struggled to get going in the first half of ball games, and yesterday was no different, especially playing without Darren McFadden for a second straight week. Defensively, playing without their defensive leaders in Richard Seymour and Tyvon Branch, the Raiders D looked dismal, and that falls squarely on the players, and the coaches.
The one thing I still can’t seem to wrap my brain around is, who is head coach Dennis Allen? Allen displays no intensity on the sidelines, and his laid back demeanor is rare among NFL defensive minds. I’m sorry, but when I think about the characteristics of a head coach for the Oakland Raiders, Allen definitely doesn’t fit the mode, but Hue Jackson did (I digress for now). He has yet to establish an identity with this team, let alone leave a paw print on this defense. There is simply no excuse for the lack of effort and motivation on defense during the last three games. Depth on this side of the ball was an issue during preseason if any of the starters became injured (which they obviously have), and has clearly come back to haunt the Raiders at this point of the season.
I was hoping I could actually stop prefacing upcoming games for Oakland as “winnable games” after Week 8, but clearly I was asinine to think such a thing. The Raiders head to Cincinnati next week to take on the Bengals in what they hope to be a winnable game. As for Raider Nation, I know Tuesday morning can not get here fast enough.
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Written by Arthur Kai