With the good news out of the way, let's look at the bad news. There is much more bad news this time around. Enjoy.
Of any game Matt Flynn couldn't afford to go into the tank, it was this one. Not just because it is the third preseason game which is the most important, but because Pryor came in and had his best game as a Raider. In about a quarter and a half, he managed 3 completions for 19 yards and 2 interceptions. His first interception may well have been the fault of Denarius Moore not picking up the hot read and cutting off his route, but it was an interception none the less. On the next drive, he didn't call out the corner blitz and was sacked. The next series, he fumbled a snap (and recovered it) and two plays later threw behind Jacoby Ford for his second interception. This one was very much Flynn's fault. That was his last pass of the day. His very, very bad day.
He was beat like a drum in this game. Like a whole drum set with a double kick and Alshon Jeffery was the drummer. Jeffery had seven catches in the game and three of them for 32 yards came through Jenkins. The first catch Jenkins gave up went for 12 yards on third and nine and two plays later, the Bears scored a touchdown. The next drive he gave up two catches for 23 yards as the Bears drove to their third touchdown of the day. The final catch went for 11 yards to put the Bears in range for a 53-yard field goal.
While starting at right guard, the entire offensive line struggled. The running game couldn't get going as per usual. Nix wasn't solely responsible but he was part of it. On the first series, with the Raiders in 2nd and one, he was pushed into the backfield to give up a tackle for loss. The series ended on the next play. The next drive ended with Matt Flynn's first interception. He had to get the ball out quickly because Nix whiffed on the block. The Bears got the ball at the Raiders' 32-yard line and scored a touchdown on one play.
Right off the top, he didn't have a single tackle or stat of any kind in this game. He should have had a tackle or two. If he had, the Raiders would have been a lot better off. The first tackle he didn't have was the Bears second touchdown on a ten yard run right through his position. The next tackle he didn't have was with the Bears in third and ten early in the second quarter. He broke through the line and then missed the tackle as Jay Cutler scrambled for 13 yards and a first down. The Bears finished off the drive with their third touchdown. Did I mention Bears' running back Matt Forte had 76 yards on six carries (12.7 yards per carry) and Michael Bush had two touchdowns? That kind of pummeling is what Walker's return to action was supposed to remedy.
Usually one of the rare bright spots on an otherwise porous offensive line, Wiz kid was not at his sharpest in this game. He gave up a run stuff in the first quarter, had a false start in the second quarter, and was called for holding in the third quarter.
His big mistake was the kind of mistake that became commonplace with him all through last season. In this case it was nearly identical to an errant route he ran last season that also resulted in an interception. The thing Denarius is doing wrong is the play call for him to break off his route and come back toward the quarterback when he is under pressure. It's a hot read in which the quarterback and receiver must be on the same page. Flynn thought, as Carson Palmer before him, that Denarius would recognize this and come back for the ball. He didn't, once again, and once again, the defender did and it resulted in an interception. Denarius had one catch on the day for nine yards. That catch and that interception were the only two times he was targeted.
Two returns, two fumbles. He bobbled the opening kickoff before corralling it for a 22-yard return. The second kickoff return, he fielded cleanly and then fumbled it after contact. Luckily the Raiders recovered it and kept the ball. He has not looked good in kick returns all preseason and is in danger of not making this team.
With all the talk about crazy schemes by the ‘mad chemist', the Raiders defense blew up in their faces Friday. It didn't matter what the Bears did, they nearly always had a wide open receiver or open field for the running back. There were too many occasions in which there was nobody home for the Raiders to say it was a personnel problem. Two straight weeks now the opposing first team offense got whatever they wanted, whenever and however they wanted it. The difference this week is this was the game in which the Raiders were to game plan for the opponent. There was absolutely nothing resembling a game plan from the defense.