Sunday, all eyes will be on Jeff Saturday and Parks Frazier as they take over the Indianapolis Colts and a beleaguered offense.
But, the truth is, all the pressure is on Las Vegas Raiders’ head coach Josh McDaniels and his defensive coordinator Patrick Graham. No on is expecting the Raiders to lose this game and if they do, their already nightmare season will reach the basement of NFL misery.
I mean, can the Raiders rally lose this game? We know the Colts’ gory details:
- Saturday is coaching his first NFL game as an interim head coach. His only coaching experience is as a high-school coach in Georgia.
- Frazier is 30 and he has never called a game. Yet, Sunday he will call the Colts’ offensive
- This is an offense that scored three points and had just 121 yards of total offense in a Week 9 loss to the Patriots.
- Quarterback Sam Ehlinger has played just two games and has not been good.
- Star running back Johnathan Taylor may not play with an ankle injury, but there is hope he can play Sunday.
So, yes, the Colts are not an NFL-level offense at the moment.
Sure, the Las Vegas defense has been struggling for most of the season. But, still, it would be inexcusable if the Colts score double digits in this game. Actually, the Raiders should be aiming for a shutout.
Still, when asked about the strange situation this week, Graham is not taking anything for granted as he prepares for this matchup.
“I think you got to look at what they’ve done so far this year and what they’ve been successful with. As we’ve talked about before, in this league it’s about the people. So, I’m sure (Frazier) been there for - I can’t remember the exact amount of years he’s been there – but he knows the people and he’s going to know who he’s going to try to get the ball to. So, I think it starts there,” Graham said. “And then schematically, you can’t expect it to change totally over one week. So, you got to prepare for the people. I’m sure he’s been put in that position because he’s earned it, however they evaluate it, he’s earned it. So, I’m sure he’ll be prepared, and we just got to be ready to adjust on Sunday.”
Again, if the Colts’ offense has big success Sunday, McDaniels and Graham will have a lot of questions to answer and probably not just from the media and the fan base.