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Quick hits: Notes, analysis on Raiders offense in week 12 win over Panthers

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Quick thoughts and insights on the offensive performance of the week 12 victory over Carolina

After a re-watch of the game, here are a few quick thoughts on what the Offense did on Sunday.

  • This team knows how to play from behind
    • Seattle ever since Pete Carroll took over has had this calm even when they get down early. They don't panic and they always make a comeback.
    • I'm just blown away so far this year that this Raiders' team has that same type of calm regardless of what may have happened or what is happening.
    • Neither the offense NOR the defense panics and they go out and do what they have to do
    • Part of this is that they play with and for each other; if a player fails to make a play or makes a mistake, his teammates pick him up or the unit gives him a chance to atone for it. And these players really make good on 2nd chances.
    • They play loose like they have nothing to lose.
    • So much Confidence in the 4th quarter. This is a direct result of that Week One 2-point conversion to Crabtree.
    • Thank you, Coach Del Rio.
    • Nearly exactly 2 years ago, in week 12 of the 2014 season. 0-10 and facing the 7-3 KC Chiefs on Thursday Night Football, the Legend was born. It was Derek Carr's first 4th Quarter Comeback win. And fittingly enough, it was to #89! (James Jones)
  • Coming together
    • This really feels like a team coming together
    • There's a real selflessness to this team led by guys like Derek Carr and Amari Cooper who are Team-First guys and with other like Michael Crabtree who have fully bought in.
    • I love how much they celebrate each other's successes
      • Donald Penn flashed Latavius Murray's celebration on the TD

        • Derek Carr did Seth Roberts' celebratory pose on the 2 point conversion

    • I want to steal the slogan from the 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates for this unit (and really for this entire team) : "We are Family!" (theme song by Sister Sledge)
  • Only 2 offensive penalties (1 accepted)
    • Austin Howard holding (declined)
    • Michael Crabtree/Seth Roberts illegal shift
  • McGloin's big hit
    • That free runner was his responsibility.
    • Panthers showed Double A-Gap blitz and the protection was sliding to the right with the back taking the 2nd interior blitzer.
    • That left the safety unaccounted for by the protection so "he belongs to the QB" which means that the QB is tasked with reading him and getting the ball out before the blitzer gets there.
    • That's a big difference between how Carr sees the game/field and how McGloin does
  • When Seth Roberts drops a pass, he makes up for it with a TD.
    • Last week, Seth dropped a pass and didn't make up for it, so he "owed us one!"
    • He delivered
    • He also dropped a pass this game
    • He delivered with a 2 point conversion
  • Clive is earning more playing time
    • Dirty work = blocking
    • Fun stuff = receiving
    • His blocking is still iffy and his effort is erratic, but it's improving
    • Is learning to expect the ball even when "covered"
    • Did not have that anticipation earlier, but is getting it now
  • Multiple options in passing offense
    • Emergence of Clive and Jalen/DeAndre as viable receiving targets really gives the Air Attack multiple options and makes it unpredictable.
    • Derek Carr is fully willing to go to whomever gets open and this Receiving corps is unselfish enough to do dirty work to help out whomever catches the ball
    • Hybrid players everywhere. Or at least players that can line up everywhere that can cause matchup problems
      • Jalen Richard/DeAndre Washington/Latavius Murray/Jamize Olawale can line up at RB or WR
      • Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper both have lined up at RB
      • Walford lines up on the line or detached and even at the FB position
  • Derek Carr gives the WRs a chance to make a play
    • He puts the ball where they have a chance
    • He's improved significantly in ball placement / timing with WRs and it's so amazing. The touchdown throw to Clive Walford was as beautiful as they get.

    • WRs are now expecting it and so they are prepared to make those clutch catches
    • Deep throw to Michael Crabtree when he's covered by AJ Klein.
      • If Carr's arm isn't hit, it may have been a touchdown.
      • Star Lotulelei hits the arm and the ball in underthrown by 5-10 yards

  • Noticing that Derek Carr rarely "fades away" on his throws these days
    • Last year, Carr would feel pressure sometimes or not trust his protection and make throws while his body bails away backwards.
    • He will still throws flat-footed, but generally on quick throws and the ball is spot-on accurate
  • KO
    • He is excellent, obviously
    • But, his greatest contribution to the team is that he's instilling a special brand of NASTY attitude that has been missing since Steve Wisniewski retired in 2001
    • In 2009, Richard Seymour joined the Raiders and restored the Raiders' nasty attitude. The young Front 7 players latched onto him and followed his lead which was a big reason for the (relative) success of the 2010-2011 seasons.
    • KO's bringing that same type of thermonuclear mindset to the offense.
    • The OL + 1 (since they often use 6 offensive linemen) is building an identity and that's the backbone of the offense.
    • The play is improving but it's still not 100% what it will be
  • Panthers Defense : We will not let Amari Cooper beat us
    • Reply by the Raiders Offense : Ok, so we'll throw to everyone else
    • Result : 293 receiving yards to 9 other OAK players (only 22 yards to Amari)
  • Rush offense needs to get on track, though
    • 26 att / 68 yards, 2.6 avg
    • Limited by shotgun in the 2nd half, but was still not effective in the first half when full playbook was available
    • Pin and Pull attempts early were not successful. These are plays when the OT downblocks and the G (sometimes both Guards or G+C) will pull to lead the play outside
    • When the offense can run the ball against great run defenses, then we know the OL has finally arrived
  • The entire offense came up big in the 4th quarter
  • That Michael Crabtree sideline backshoulder fade was a Sight Adjustment. OL was run blocking while Carr/Crab had the Mental Connect.

  • Shotgun Victory Formation
    • On a day when it seemed like we saw everything, we had a shotgun victory formation.
    • I've never seen that before

  • The Raiders' "Mystique"
    • I want to name Bill Musgrave's offense "Mystique" because it is now starting to shape-shift as needed.
    • This will be put to the test at the end of the year and (hopefully) in the playoffs
    • Last year was a feeling out / audition process and this year was a solid implementation and growth. The next couple of years are when it's going to REALLY get good.
    • Dear NFL, you are not ready for what is coming your way!