“Josh Jacobs is an absolute savage.”
That emphatic statement came from CBS’ Adam Archuleta during Sunday’s television broadcast as he began to illustrate the equally decisive 86-yard walkoff touchdown run in overtime by the Las Vegas Raiders running back in the team’s 40-34 overtime win over the Seattle Seahawks.
In what’s truly been at topsy turvy Jekyll & Hyde season for the Silver & Black, Jacobs’ is one of the constants that can put the entire team on his back and carry it — if need be. Just how savage was Jacobs’ afternoon against Seattle?
Try: 33 carries, 229 yards, two touchdowns to go along with six catches for 74 yards. According to NFL Research, Jacobs is the only player at least 1950 with 225-plus rushing yards and 70-plus receiving yards in a single game. And here’s the cherry on top: The 229 rushing yards are the most Seattle’s yielded in team history — surpassing — Bo Jackson’s 221 yards when he was a Los Angeles Raider in 1989.
While Jacobs didn’t bust a Bo and plow into and carry a rash Seahawks linebacker into the end zone with him, his 86-yard sprint and run was extremely impressive and will go down as one of the best things of the Raiders’ 2022 season. Not only did Jacobs showcase breakaway speed, but the Raiders offense put excellence of execution on tape.
Josh Jacobs gained +77 rushing yards over expected on his walk-off 86-yard TD run, the most by a RB over the last two seasons.— Next Gen Stats (@NextGenStats) November 28, 2022
Jacobs reached a top speed of 20.43 mph on the play, the fastest speed of his career.#LVvsSEA | Powered by @awscloud pic.twitter.com/ywdR3PaE6w
From quarterback Derek Carr lining up under center and then making an adjustment and identifying a defender, to the once-musical chair offensive line owning the line of scrimmage, to fullback Jakob Johnson erasing a linebacker, and Jacobs bursting through and galloping to the end zone with raucous Raider Nation at Lumen Field, Las Vegas executed when it needed it most. And that’s something head coach Josh Jacobs and his coaching staff harp about from training camp to now: Do your job.
That should’ve come way before the second half of the season, however, the moment arrived. For some of the league’s lower echelon squads, that never comes. And it’s up to the ragamuffin Raiders to prove it can be a sustainable thing and not fleeting.
Sunday’s win against Seattle was a little bit of everything for Las Vegas. There were moments of brilliance and mental lapses that kept the game a true seesaw as momentum careened from one team to the other. Oh and there were most definitely play calls that could’ve been lambasted. Such as a toss play on 4th-and-1 with 9:01 left in the fourth quarter. That was snuffed out by the Seahawks defense that was getting smoked by outside runs before then. Seven plays later, Seattle got into the end zone to take a 34-27 lead, momentarily so.
But again, that instance highlights the stark difference of when the Raiders execute McDaniels’ play calls. When everyone is doing their job, purposeful attack. When there is a lapse or two, frustrating disaster. Perhaps the player execution many found as a convenient excuse for Raiders coaches is legit, eh?
“It reaffirms the things that we have been talking about, the things that Josh (McDaniels) has been talking about,” Carr said in the postgame press conference. The exciting thing is after the game of course we’re excited, but it’s like everyone is sitting there talking about, ‘Man, I could have done this,’ or ‘I could have done that,’ and that’s what’s going to push us to be better as an organization for the long term and push us to be better as a team in the short term.”
Let’s hit those quick slants as fast as Jacobs dusted the Seahawks defense on that walkoff touchdown sprint:
—What more can be said about the Raiders’ Maxx Crosby that hasn’t been already? The edge rusher racked up 1.5 sacks and six quarterback hits as he terrorized Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith and changed the complexion of the game.
—Raiders defensive tackles Andrew Billings and Bilal Nichols provided much-needed interior pass rush as the pair collected a sack and half a sack, respectively. In total, Las Vegas hit Smith a total of 10 times. For comparison’s sake, Seattle hit Carr four times.
—Las Vegas’ much-maligned defense was stout against Seattle’s ground game limiting impressive rookie running back Kenneth Walker III to 26 yards on 14 carries. Yes, two of those carries were for touchdowns, but Raider defenders rallied to the ball carrier and tackled well.
—The Raiders pass defense was a completely different matter as the Seahawks completed 27 passes for 328 yards and two touchdowns (wide receiver DK Metcalf did the most damage with 11 catches for 90 yards).
—Thumping Raiders middle linebacker Denzel Perryman, who led the team with nine total tackles, is much more known for his run defense. Yet he showed some coverage chops by dropping back in the deep middle and intercepting a Smith pass.
—Raiders kicker Daniel Carlson missed a 56-yard field goal wide right on the team’s initial overtime possession. That was a result of losing a yard on a 3rd-and-1 play that was another outside run. Carlson finished 2-for-3.