The Las Vegas Raiders have played two games under interim head coach Rich Bisaccia and they have registered two, full-team victories.
After beating the visiting Philadelphia Eagles 33-22, the Raiders have their first back-to-back double-digit victories in four years. They are 5-2 and are tied for the best record in the AFC as they roar into their bye week.
#Raiders lead by 20+ points in back to back games for 1st time since 2015 when they did it in Weeks 7 and 8 vs Chargers and Jets in 2015— Josh Dubow (@JoshDubowAP) October 24, 2021
The two-game losing streak and coach Jon Gruden’s sudden departure seems like ages ago for the rolling Raiders.
Let’s look at five things that stood out about Las Vegas’ latest victory:
Run game gets going:
The Raiders had 119 rushing yards on 29 carries. They averaged 4.1 yards a carry and had a good push for most of the game. The Raiders went into the game averaging 3.3 yards per play, which was the worst in the NFL. Josh Jacobs had a solid start, but he left before the half with a chest injury. Luckily for the Raiders, backup Kenyan Drake had his second straight strong game. NFL Media reported Jacobs’ injury may not be long term.
The #Raiders ruled out RB Josh Jacobs quickly with a chest injury, but early indications are that he avoided a major injury, per source. They have a bye next week, so extra time to recover.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) October 24, 2021
Good O-line day:
The Las Vegas offensive line showed improvements last week at Denver and then went and had its strongest game of the season Sunday against the Eagles, who have a stout defensive line.
Nice job by Leatherwood single blocking Fletcher Cox— Ted Nguyen (@FB_FilmAnalysis) October 24, 2021
Andre James gets a chip on Hargrave and then Moreau gets a chip on him too pic.twitter.com/VjRuXDQDHy
The unit looked relaxed and settled down. It helped Raiders’ quarterback Derek Carr have another monster game as he had a clean pocket for much of the game as he completed 31 of 34 passes for 323 yards.
Derek Carr completed 31 of 34 passes today. Carr's three incompletions are the fewest ever by a quarterback who threw 34 or more passes in a game.— Michael David Smith (@MichaelDavSmith) October 24, 2021
Big end of first half:
For the second week in a row, the Raiders took control of the game in the second quarter. Yes, the Raiders started slow again Sunday. But then it exploded in the second half, scoring 17 points to take a comfortable 17-7 lead at halftime. In total, the Raiders scored 30 unanswered points in this game. The total team effort in the second quarter was the catalyst of this win.
With Star tight end Darren Waller out with an ankle injury that he suffered at practice Friday, backup tight end Foster Moreau had a chance to start and he didn’t disappoint. Moreau, little-used in the receiving game, had a career-high six catches for 60 yards, including a beautiful touchdown in the second quarter. Moreau can play and even with Waller expected back soon, this is another reminder Las Vegas needs to find targets for the third-year player.
Beat the bad teams:
The Raiders are in the middle of a great schedule opportunity and they are taking advantage of it. The Broncos and Eagles are bad teams and the Raiders treated them like bad teams, easily dispatching them. Good teams don’t play down to the level of their opponent. The Raiders were bit by that bug earlier this month in a home loss to the Chicago Bears. On Sunday, the Raiders took care of business against a lousy team like a true playoff contender should. That’s a good sign.