What the hell was that? Seriously, what an ugly game of football and the fact that Derek Carr was out there for the entire first half makes it even worse. It was the very definition of a Jekyll and Hyde team when comparing their solid preseason debut against the Cardinals to the crap show that was last night's game against the Packers.
The good news is that "It's just preseason" is something used after bad losses just like it was after the good win against Arizona. This game was ugly and disappointing by the Raiders, but it still is just a preseason game and really has no baring on what we should expect from the regular season, We hope so anyway, am-I-right?!
There really weren't very many bright spots to point out in this game, and I do my best to be a positive individual. Unfortunately, that just isn't really the case today. The only player I can highlight as someone who was very impressive was Khalil Mack, and that's like saying the sky is blue. Mack was a consistently dominant player again in this one, but that's just what he does at this point.
Amari Cooper and Derek Carr did have a beautiful connection on their first drive where Carr put the ball right in the basket for Cooper on a 3rd and 11. Unfortunately, Cooper didn't really fight on a different long ball that ended up in an interception by Damarious Randall. Personally, that looked like defensive pass interference on that play because Randall definitely was pushing off of Cooper. Still, Cooper didn't show much fight on the play and then barely managed to tag Randall to the ground afterwards.
There was the late block punt by Brynden Trawick which was a great play, there wasn't a doubt from the snap of the ball that Trawick was going to get there for the block. It also was good effort by Nate Allen on that play to recover the fumble for the Raiders only touchdown of the night. As far as preseason goes though, special teams play mean even more because it is often the difference between a player making the team or not and this was a big moment for Trawick.
The worst part of the whole game was the play calling by the offense though, even without any game planning involved it was awful. The Raiders rarely went downfield at all during the game and was consistently losing battles along the line of scrimmage. There were so many plays that were short passes, screens, or completely obvious runs that it had my head spinning. It's hard to understand what the coaches are thinking when the play calling is that easy to read.
Despite all the bad football from last night, again it is important to remember this is just preseason. There are many years where teams go 4-0 and then tank during the year, and many years where teams do badly in the preseason only to dominate when real football starts. This was a bad, sloppy game but they have 2 more preseason games left to work out these kinks.
Now the Raiders turn their attention to the most important preseason game out of all of them, the all-important 3rd game. They will be playing the Tennessee Titans who are planning on being a run dominant team this year so it should be a good test for Oakland.
They obviously were not prepared to stop the run against the Packers so it should be interesting to see if they learned their lesson next week against the Titans. Really they need to be more prepared in general because they just played incredibly flat football against the Packers. This was a disappointing, lackluster game against a good opponent but its on to the next one now. Hopefully the bad play won't follow the Raiders into next week's game against the Titans too.