With the Chargers victory over the Broncos on Thursday, the Raiders were in a position to take sole possession of first place in the AFC West with a win over the Chiefs. But the rain washed the defense away and the Silver and Black lost 26-10. How did the defense grade out in the defeat?
While the Raiders pass defense did not give up a passing touchdown to Alex Smith, they consistently allowed big plays through the air which setup the Chiefs rushing attack in the endzone. Smith picked apart the secondary despite finishing with just 224 yards. Even Karl Joseph who has played well since becoming a starter struggled with his pass defense. As for the pass rush, the team managed just one quarterback hit which came on a Khalil Mack sack.
For a defense with as much talent as the Raiders have, they should be performing at a much higher level. It is scary to think how dangerous this team could be if the defense turns it around.
It's a bird, it's a plane, it's Spencer Ware still running. Ware led the Chiefs with 131 yards on the ground and a touchdown. Jamaal Charles pitched in with 33 rushing yards and a touchdown. Even defensive tackle Dontari Poe scored a rushing touchdown, that's how you know it's bad.
The Raiders had no answer to Ware and he averaged over five yards a carry. There were too many times when the Raiders had a chance to hold the Chiefs on third down and failed to do so due to the run defense. Another piss poor performance by this team.
Every week, this is the toughest section to grade because both Ken Norton Jr and the players are to blame for the lackluster performance of the defense. But if I am going to grade the players a D and F, Norton as the defensive coordinator shares the blame also as this defense never had an answer and were both outcoached and outplayed.
Overall Defensive Grade: D-
Jalen Richard opened up the game with a 50-yard kickoff return setting up the Raiders offense with great field position. After that, it was downhill for this unit as Sebastian Janikowski missed a chip-shot field goal. Seabass also converted a 46-yard field goal as time expired in the first half.
Marquette King punted three times averaging 53 yards a punt which is a pretty dang good number. He had himself another solid game despite the poor weather conditions.