Hurst is the only defensive player ranked in the Raiders top five. Hurst has been by far the defense’s most productive and consistent player. Through six games, Hurst is looking like a draft day steal after he fell to round five.
Hurst has 12 tackles, two sacks, three pass deflections, and one forced fumble. His ability to push the pocket continues to show up on film.
The next two highest graded defensive players are Nick Morrow (80.5) who has only played seven defensive snaps on the year and Frostee Rucker (70.5). Due to the limit amount of snaps played by Morrow he does not qualify for the top five.
The offensive line is bruised and battered but there has been one bright spot in the group. Rodney Hudson has been rock solid for an offensive line that badly needs the stability. Hudosn ranks third among players at his position.
Donald Penn who was placed on injured reserve was struggling with the shift to right tackle. Rookie, Brandon Parker has stepped in as the new starting right tackle and has not faired much better (53.4).
Kelechi Osemele, missed both weeks five and six with a knee injury. Jon Feliciano replaced Osemele at left guard, but he suffered a rib injury in the first quarter against the Seahawks. Justin Murray saw the first action of his pro career in relief of Feliciano.
Rookie, Kolton Miller appeared to be progressing nicely at left tackle but has struggled recently giving up six sacks the past two weeks. Miller is playing through an MCL strain that is clearly effecting his ability.
Jared Cook started out the year red hot recording 370 of his 400 receiving yards in the first four weeks.
The past two games have been a different story. Cook’s production has taken a major dip, catching only six balls for 30 yards.
Cook’s name has also been mentioned as a player who could be available as the trade deadline approaches. That will be something to monitor in the next couple of weeks.
Along with Cook, Marshawn Lynch has been one of the positives for the Raiders offense. Lynch has ran hard and with a purpose.
Lynch currently sits just outside the top 10 leading rushers in the league with 376 yards. Jon Gruden said this week that Lynch is undergoing an MRI on his ailing groin injury. Gruden also stated that he is “very concerned” about the status of Lynch going forward.
There has been no more polarizing figure for the Raiders, than Derek Carr. One week he is praised for his effort and heroics leading the Raiders to a comeback win versus the Browns. And the following two weeks he is blamed for terrible offensive performances.
The most glaring issue with Carr through six weeks is that he is trying to do to much. He knows how bad the defense is and as a result has forced the issue on a few plays.
It would be great to see Carr and Gruden get on the same page throughout the remaining ten weeks. At this point the 2018 season is a lost cause, let’s start looking for small victories that Carr and Gruden can build on in 2019.