Now, that's what Pre-Season is all about, right?!?
Honestly? there wasn't too much to harp about during the first few series of the game. It was the same ol same ol while witnessing: no push from the Offensive Linemen, no aggressiveness from the Defensive Linemen, nothing exciting from the starting Offense and nothing dynamic from the Coordination department (Thanks, Greg Olson). We were in for another long, cold and no frills Friday night game until...
TP2 started to shine!
Now, I'll be the first one to tell you, I had my doubts in the past. Terrelle Pryor always had limits in my mind to convert the deep ball, pass the ball with consistent accuracy and not make the critical throws..
but every week changes!
Pryor was awesome at shaking tackles, creating extra time for the Receivers, completing tough throws and even making important conversions with his feet. Hell, we all KNEW the kid could make plays with his feet..but his passing accuracy was the real story! 7 for 9 for 93 yards in a Pre-Season game isn't huge news to the NFL, but at the current time? It's enough for the Oakland Raider Nation!
I have to admit, this team looks a little deadlier with Ford, Moore, McFadden and Pryor in on the same Offensive play.
If the team continues to implement the Pistol and Read Option in the current Oakland Raider playbook, there's no telling how far we can go. Welcome to the "real" NFL, Oaktown- now don't get cocky!!!!
The bad news? Holy Nerf Herder...take your pick. Our Linemen blocking seemed a little improved from last game, but still lack consistency to create gaps for our Running Backs and protect the Quarterback properly. The blocking communication between Running Backs and the Offense was awful again. I believe that's the main reason Matt Flynn was not feeling as comfortable as he thought he'd be.
Can anyone tell me why Marcel Reece hasn't received as many carries as the other backs in this Pre Season? Sure, he's a Full back, but a PRO BOWLER Back, right?
You'd think Coach Allen and Olson would throw him a bone once in a while knowing he can create mis-matches as seen last year. Time will only tell if they feed the Beast. It can only help our team.
Defense? We had Defense?!?! The Dark Side needs a Pass Rush, damn it!! I know we have a few guys out here and there- but c'mon sons! You're better than that!
We also seem to have holes in our Zones that cause Running Backs to catch all over us while exploiting weaknesses. Jason Tarver, please place the right guys in the right position. I know we lack talent here and there, but I'm sure there's something you can do besides run Blitz plays that don't get to the Quarterback.
It was nice to see DJ Hayden out there finally after a tough off season with injuries. There were a couple plays he could of executed a bit better, but I think he did ok for his 1st appearance.
Time will only tell if he valued as a true first round pick. I think he is.
Cutler and Forte connected on a 32-yard touchdown pass, former Raiders running back Michael Bush added a pair of touchdown runs and Alshon Jeffery caught seven passes for 77 yards as theBears (2-1) broke out to a 27-0 lead in the first half."It was a good outing for everybody, but it is preseason," Cutler said. "You can't get caught up in that. I don't think we can get too high on this game. We made some mistakes and we need to go back and look at them. But it's a good barometer of where we're at and where we can go."
This was likely the last full test for Chicago's first-team offense before the season as the top stars will play sparingly -- if at all -- in the exhibition finale next week against Cleveland.
The Raiders (1-2) might need to use next week's game against Seattle to figure out who their quarterback will be.
Matt Flynn threw two interceptions on just six passes before being pulled in favor of Terrelle Pryor in the second quarter to the delight of frustrated Raidersfans. Oakland's first-team defense was shredded and the usually reliable Sebastian Janikowski even missed a 49-yard field goal before connecting from 58 yards out on the final play of the first half to get Oakland on the board.
"We were very frustrated with how we performed," Flynn said. "Watch it, correct it and you have to move on. We'll move on from this."
"What I want to look at is who gives us the best chance to move the ball down the field and score points," coach Dennis Allen said. "Obviously I'm not going to look at one night and base any type of decision on one night. I'll go back and I'll look at it and we'll see where we go from here."Pryor electrified the crowd by leading a late field-goal drive in the first half and then running and throwing for scores in the third quarter. Pryor finished 7 for 9 for 93 yards passing to go along with 37 yards rushing and led Oakland to 20 points on five drives and made a case that he should be the starter when the season starts.
The Bears came into this game looking to show their passing offense was more than just Brandon Marshall after he was targeted on all five throws by Cutler last week against San Diego. Cutler managed to do that on the first drive with long completions to Jeffery and tight end Marcellus Bennett that set up a field goal by Robbie Gould.
"We just called more of our packages and everybody got a chance to get the ball," Bennett said.
Both those completions came against Raiders rookie DJ Hayden, who played his first game since a near fatal practice collision last November in college at Houston. Hayden recovered from that scare and was picked 12th overall by Oakland, but was not cleared for contact until this week. He missed a tackle on Jeffery's 22-yard gain, but later on the drive broke up a pass to Marshall.
Cutler continued to spread the ball around on the second drive after a Tim Jennings interception. Forte took a swing pass on the next play and went in for a 32-yard touchdown.
"It was kind of imperative to do that, come out there and get everything going efficiently," Forte said. "We started off fast. It was good to get that continuity going."Cutler led three more scoring drives in the half and finished the night 12 for 21 for 142 yards with the touchdown. He completed passes to five players with none going to Marshall on four attempts in that direction.
The Raiders' first-team offense had no bright spots with Flynn throwing as many interceptions (two) as first downs produced (two) in five drives, leading to frequent boos from the home crowd.
Pryor led a late drive for a field goal at the end of the first half and then showed his athleticism on the opening drive of the third quarter. He hit Rod Streater on a 19-yard pass after scrambling out of pressure and then scored on a 25-yard run.
Pryor then threw for a score when he threaded a 19-yard pass to rookie tight end Nick Kasa on third-and-16 before sitting for the rest of the game.
"I love to throw the ball," Pryor said. "I find joy in throwing it. I also find joy in making plays with my feet too. It's definitely something the defense has to look out for and it opens up a lot of things. But I'd rather throw a touchdown then run it."
1 more Pre-Season game to go! Woo Hoo! Let's take it to the Hawks this Thursday and finish on a positive note!
May the Dark Side consume you!