The Raiders lost, again, this time a 37-6 drubbing at the hands of Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. Manning and the offense marched down the field on their first possession of the game and got into the endzone on 22 yard laser-rocket to TE Joel Dreesen. They took the lead with 10:32 left in the first quarter and were never threatened in a game that saw the Raiders outmatched in all three phases of the game.
Head coach Dennis Allen and his coaching staff deserve the largest amount of the blame. The team came out flat and uninspired. The game plans on both sides of the ball were ineffective and uninspired. Plus, Allen, who had previously shown a killer spirit against Pittsburgh – going for it on 4th and short, an unexpected onsides kick – punted on 4th & short 3 times in the first half, giving the ball back to a fiery hot Manning who marched the Broncos down the field time and again.
The score was close when the game went into halftime, still, with the Broncos up only 10-6. However that was due, in large part, to some lucky breaks on the Raiders part. First, the Broncos decided to try a fake FG pass from the kicker, Prater, to Zane Beatles but Beatles fell down on the play and the pass fell incomplete. That gave the Raiders good field position and kept the Broncos from scoring, something the Raiders had been unable to do on their own.
Later in the first half the team gave up a huge play on a bubble screen that went undefended but caught a huge break when the receiver fumbled the ball without being touched as he tried to move the ball from one arm to the other. The receiver was anticipating being hit by Tyvon Branch, who had good hustle on the play.
Without those two big turnovers by Denver, both of which were essentially self-inflicted, the score would have been much higher against the Raiders.
Despite the Raiders’ close score at half clearly not being due to the team really competing well, Dennis Allen seemed dogged in his refusal to try to win the game. I would have been happy with any kind of trick play or at least going for it on 4th down at any time in the game. The Raiders only went for the 4th down conversion twice in the game and one of those times was the Raiders last play of the game, a 4th down try that failed.
Also looking overmatched was offensive coordinator Greg Knapp. I have defended Knapp to this point not because I believe in him but because I think that judging a new coordinator after only one or two games is ridiculous. However, the season is now a quarter over and I cannot defend him after this game.
The Raiders offense showed some progress last week against the Steelers only to take two steps backward this week.
The team was unable to run, with McFadden regressing back to a 2.6 yard per carry average, again. Palmer targeted Moore eight times but was only able to complete half of them. Marcel Reece was also targeted 8 times and really looked dominant after the first quarter but Denver adjusted well to covering him and Knapp, Palmer & the rest of the offense couldn’t seem to accommodate likewise.
Brandon Myers, the team’s leading receiver so far this season was only targeted two times, coming down with one. Myers has been a good weapon for the team so not targeting him more was a bad decision, I think.
I’d rail more against DC Jason Tarver but Peyton is one of the best QBs ever and there are many a proven defensive coordinators with better personnel that have fallen to him. Suffice to say that Tarver and the defense had no answer to Manning who came out after half time and scored 3 TD’s in the 3rd quarter to put the game so far out of reach that they barely had to try in the 4th quarter.
Tarver is a big proponent of putting pressure on the quarterback but the Raiders were unable to get any pressure on Manning. Manning was not sacked at all and barely had pressure on most plays. He was hit maybe 3 times in the game, only.
The Raiders defense was so bad that it the Denver offense did not punt at all in the entire game.
Special teams was a mixed bag. Taiwan Jones was a standout as a gunner. He was involved in 4 tackles on the Denver punt returner that I counted and two of those were him getting to the returner before anyone else and being able to make the tackle by himself in the open-field. It was a very impressive display by the second year RB.
On the negative side, the Raiders had another punt blocked again due to poor line blocking on special teams.
In all, this was an entire team loss with each squad contributing to the blow out. I put the blame squarely on head coach Dennis Allen for this one, accordingly. It is his job to get the players in a position to play and he and his staff failed to do so.
It’s not the end of the world – playoffs were always a longshot and the team can technically still make playoffs this year. However, with each loss it seems less and less likely and the team now limps into their bye week and must prepare to play against a red-hot Atlanta team in week 6.
During the bye week, the Raiders – both coaches and players –need to take a good, hard look in the mirror and decide how they want this season to end. They have the talent on the team to compete but have been blown out in 3 of their 4 games. If they do not decide to change this, fans can start looking forward to a high 1st round draft pick, again, this year.
For more Raiders news & analysis, follow me on Twitter @AsherMathews
It is zane Beadles, not Beatles.
With you on Desmond Bryant, he is younger and more productive than both Seymour and Kelly right now, but especially Kelly. And I have been campaigning for McClain to get benched all yearso with you there too.
Maybe our corners could also play lesss than 8 yards off man, you know, against a quarterback with arm strength problems? Yeah, this one is on the coaches.
Lifer and Gibbs have it right. This is who we are. We didn't make the playoffs last season with a better team and a weaker division - so how are we going to make it this year? We're not. This is basically a rebuilding year. I hate to say it, but the best thing that might happen to this team is to be mathematically eliminated so Allen will adjust his game plan and open it up a little. He's not playing to win - he's playing not to lose (sometimes referred to as "The Gruden Method"). If he wants to stick around - he should cut loose. We're not going to win going straight up against most teams - we need an edge. We need to take chances.
@AsherMathews Yes the loss is on DA. Also it's time to bench McClain and trade him for whatever pick we get. Let's start Goethel or Curry.
get use to this fellas because this is pretty much how every game is goiing to look this year. and about the zbs i wouldnt put it all on run dmc but rather the o-linemen. especially right when d-mac gets the ball hes getting hit at the line or behind it. as far as trying to implement what the falcons and texans did to the broncos just isnt possible with this defensive unit they just dont have a capable personnel like thos teams do
If we are going to stick with the ZBS, than Please trade DMC. Dont waste that mans career. He Cannot thrive in this scheme at all. At least we can get something out of him while he is in his prime and healthy. I Love the dude but It's a waste of his talent and the powers that be are obviously going to stick with this crap. Dennis Allen in way over his head. Gregg Knack is doing exactly what I expected of him. Penalties only plus and the only reason we beat Pitt. Cant believe some people saying he got back on track last week. Take away that 64 yd run and what did he have? Trade him while we can, He'll be hurt very soon, Or pull your heads out and fire Gregg Knack! So F#ing Pissed!!
@DonovanGibbs D-Mac should have been traded before the season with this way of running the offense! But his value is limited right now - whatever we would be able to get would not be what we would ask for probably! Really hope they start emphasizing plays that fits our talent (especially D-Mac), otherwise D-Mac deserves better!
Can anyone explain to me why the success of Atlanta's defensive scheme wasn't used? At least even once!?!?!? Houston figured it out the following week, If Tarver is so brilliant, you would think he would be able to identify the success Atlanta and Houston had and apply it.
@KenRWilliams Makes no sense - especially with Mannings armstrength not yet at a 100%, giving him the short and intermediate routes free of pressure and with large cushion makes no sense! Also, the Falcons are extremely good at disguising the palys - always moving around! ... Why don't we do that? Manning could read our every blitz and is too good of a player to fall into the traps then! Crappy playcalling by both Tarver and Knabb!