5 Reasons Why the Raiders Loss: A Fan’s Take

First off, I have been a Raiders fan since I was about 7 years old. I am now 21 and in the past 14 seasons, there has only been one year where the Raiders looked and played better than this year and that was back in 2002 when they earned their Super Bowl berth, but got trounced on by the Buccaneers with a little help of the referees if you ask me. But this season the Raiders looked like the team to beat and they still can if they just focus on these five areas that really hurt them in Week 7, but if fixed they could easily go anywhere from 7-2 to 9-0 the rest of the season.

1.Quarterback Issue
The last time the Raiders had a QB worth talking about was back in 2002 when Rich Gannon was at the helm and had a career year of 4700 yds, 26 TDs and only 10 picks. Since then, the Raiders have had Kerry Collins, Aaron Brooks, Andrew Walter, Josh McCown, Daunte Culpepper, Bruce Gradkowski, and the unmentionable JaMarcus Russell try to take the place of Gannon. Knowing that the Raiders haven’t had a winning season since 2002, we all know how well those guys turned out for us. Picking up Jason Campbell was a smart move, but with the injury in the collarbone, the best option the Raiders could get was Carson Palmer. Boller was a superstar in college, but never really could evolve in the NFL and still can’t. Palmer, even with three interceptions and only going 8 for 23 in the 28-0 loss on sunday to the Chiefs, definitely has star caliber and if he can pick it up with three of the fastest WR’s in the game of Heyward-Bay, Jacoby Ford, and Denarius Moore, then the passing game may finally come into factor and you won’t have McFadden running 70% of the plays.

2. Penalties
In 2010, the Raiders almost tied their 1969 record of 1, 274 yards penalized against them, just two away from their previous high…which isn’t very good. The Raiders have already started this season with 52 penalties and 13 in the game against Kansas City. That’s average of 3 a quarter. Just watching the New Orleans-Indianapolis game on Sunday night, the Saints didn’t commit their first penalty until 10 minutes into the third quarter. The Raiders would be lucky if they could start six minutes of a game without committing a penalty. Stop with the offsides, late-hits, encroachment, false starts particularly, play smart on the line and you won’t be giving the other team a first down every penalty or be going 1st and 20 from your own scrimmage.

3. Playcalling
I love the Raiders coaching staff: Hue Jackson as the head coach, Al Saunders in the Offensive Coordinator and Chuck Bresnahan as Defensive Coordinator. I may be no professional, but the stuff these guys call sometimes just makes me sick and Week 7 was a great example. In the first have, just bad decisions by Boller lead the team to three interceptions and Darren McFadden’s hurt foot somewhat hurt the team’s running game, but Michael Bush and Taiwan Jones really picked it up. But the routes the receiver’s run just look confusing and either they don’t know what they’re doing or Saunders is calling bad plays. Gotta work at that. And on defense, the Raiders are pretty solid in the front four, but aside from that it’s all pocket change. With Asomugha gone, every team with a passing game has taken full advantage of the whole field and RB’s with talent just zoom by, no one in sight of them. The defense is young as well and needs some work, but Bresnahan just needs to start calling plays that works to their strengths.

4. The Front Office
I’m not exactly sure how much the front office DIDN’T have to do with the loss against the Chiefs, but I know without a GM and someone in charge it’s gonna just be an even tougher season to get through. With the passing of Al Davis who has pretty much done everything for the Raiders since the 60’s, including coaching them, the Raiders have lost a big part in why they’ve been so good for so many years and why the last 8 excruciating painful losing seasons have hopefully rendered into another playoff contention. And if this team goes the distance, (we won’t go there just yet) or even make the playoffs, then we all have Al Davis to thank. He picked up some nice young speedy guys in the past couple of drafts and all of them have proven themselves worthy, they just have to be more consistent. Mark Davis is great, but without a real GM, the Raiders don’t have much chance.

5. Injuries
Injuries are things that you can’t really prevent. It happens to everybody. The Colts are 0-7 thanks to a loss of Peyton Manning. They would at least be 4-3 if not better with him on the field. The Dolphins have no chances anymore with an injury on Chad Henne. The Raiders have way too many players on the DL list. Jason Campbell, Chris Johnson, Matt Shaugnessy, Ricky Brown, Hiram Eugene, Janikowski has a tight hamstring, and McFadden has a foot problem. If the Raiders can get some decent help in the positions, mainly DB’s, where they’re hurting, then they can definitely bring up some more Three and out downs for opposing teams. You can’t win a game with a second-team defense. I’m sorry, but you can’t.

And there you have it. Five things to work on going into the bye, get ‘er done and we’ll see a suped up franchise once again.

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