A week after a 45 point explosion and first win of the season, the Raiders had their worst performance of the year in a 26-10 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.
The Raiders didn’t need to worry about blowing a lead in this one because at no point did they have the lead. The offensive line, in particular struggled badly. Without Donald Penn and Kelechi Osemele active for the game, Jon Feliciano and rookie third round pick Brandon Parker got the start.
With the loss the Raiders fall to 1-4.
Let’s take a look at the Raider week five report card.
Aerial Attack: C
All things considered, two rookie tackles and a back up guard starting on the offensive line, on paper the numbers look ok.
Carr finished the day 24-33, with 268 yards and one touchdown. Major points were taken off for a back breaking interception late in the third quarter. On the Chargers one yard line, Jon Gruden called a play action fake to Marshawn Lynch. Carr’s primary option was not open, Carr trying to make something out of nothing tried to make a play and the ball ended up in the hands of Melvin Ingram.
After the game Jon Gruden defended his play call. “We haven’t thrown the ball in a goal to go situation all year. It’s first and goal, the decision there is to throw it and if it’s not open you throw it away.”
Carr said he wasn’t forcing the ball to Carrier. “Ingram made a play.” Looks like a forced ball to me. Gruden should have never put him in that situation. Run the ball. pic.twitter.com/OtioLG8Cio— Evan Groat (@Egroat5) October 8, 2018
Derek Carr has a history of at times trying to do too much, this season has been no different. “I think he just presses in some moments, he knows we have to do a lot with the ball when we have it and I think that’s what happened today,” said Gruden.
Amari Cooper and Jordy Nelson combined for five catches for 53 yards.
Ground Game: F
The running game was a non factor today. The blame can be shared between the offensive line being ineffective and game flow.
Marshawn Lynch was only given nine opportunities to carry the ball. As a team the Raiders carried the ball 13 times for 44 yards.
Offensive Line: D
Starting two rookies at tackle and a back up at guard were taking into consideration when evaluating their performance.
Even with the inexperience along the line today the performance was not good. Carr was sacked three times, all three were given up by Kolton Miller. Also keep in mind, Joey Bosa did not play.
Miller getting beat on the first of the three sacks he allowed on the day. pic.twitter.com/le7w0s4cTE— Evan Groat (@Egroat5) October 8, 2018
In addition to poor run blocking, allowing pressures, the offensive line also committed several pre snap penalties which turned manageable third down situations into third and longs.
Defensive Line: B+
The boxscore numbers might not be indicative of the defensive lines production but this was one of their better performances overall.
Bruce Irvin picked up his third sack of the season. Rookies Maurice Hurst, PJ Hall, and Arden Key all had an impact on the game. PJ Hall had a tackle for loss as well as a deflected pass and Hurst had another pass deflected.
PJ Hall gets some interior push to bay Rivers pass down. pic.twitter.com/bkegD4REoN— Evan Groat (@Egroat5) October 8, 2018
Arden Key is continuing to improve as a pass rusher, it’s only a matter of time before he begins to rack up some sacks.
The Raiders defense held the Chargers to 79 yards rushing on 31 carries for a 2.5 yards per carry.
Tahir Whitehead led the defense in tackles with nine but it was the tackle he did not make that had the biggest impact on the game.
Austin Ekeler took a screen pass 40 yards for a touchdown, Whitehead whiffed badly on the play which allowed Ekeler to take it to the house.
Going into the game the Raiders defense ranked 7th in pass plays allowed over 20 yards. Explosive plays continue to be an issue. pic.twitter.com/SGpCtB1ymq— Evan Groat (@Egroat5) October 8, 2018
Big plays have plagued the Raiders all year long.
Phillip Rivers had his way with the Raiders secondary, completing 81 percent (22 of 27) of his passes for 339 yards and two touchdowns. Going into the game the Raiders defense ranked seventh in explosive pass plays allowed.
An explosive play is defined as any pass play that is completed for 20 yards or more. Today the Chargers completed passes of 26, 34, 44, and 48.
Early in the game the secondary made some plays to get off the field on third down but in the second half that was not the case.
Conley burned for 48 yards. pic.twitter.com/QYWVhLOGtK— Evan Groat (@Egroat5) October 8, 2018
Special Teams: B
Unlike last week the special teams were a non factor in the game. Dwayne Harris returned two kickoffs for 44 yards.
Matt McCrane was made one of two field goal attempts. His miss was a long 57 yard attempt 11 seconds before the half.