The Oakland Raiders went 7-9 last season, but things could have been a lot different had they not been the most inept team in the NFL during the third quarter. As Benjamin Solak of The Draft Network pointed on Twitter — albeit with an error that I’m correcting — the Raiders didn’t score very many points in the first 15 minutes after halftime.
Oakland scored 27 points in the third quarter, fewest in the NFL. The Cincinnati Bengals, worst record in the league, scored 36 points in the third quarter. The New Orleans Saints scored 130 points in the third quarter, an average of 6.4 points per game more than the Raiders.
The Raiders scored 20 points in 16 third quarters last year and I think we should talk about that more— Benjamin Solak (@BenjaminSolak) June 6, 2020
Nearly one touchdown per game.
Of course, both units contribute to one another’s successes or shortcomings usually. Oakland (yes, now Vegas) gave up 111 points in the third, which was second-most in the league behind the Carolina Panthers at 128.
The Raiders first half score was 198-200, compared to a second half score of 115-219. General manager Mike Mayock fixated on the defense through free agency and the offense through the draft, basically speaking. That’s how Vegas hopes to improve the roster, but whether it’s personnel or coaching, coming out of halftime with a better plan and a more explosive and unpredictable offense will be a key to whether or not the team returns to the postseason.
What was it about the third quarter that you felt was the biggest issue?