On Monday, the morning after the biggest collapse in team history, first-year Las Vegas Raiders coach Josh McDaniels made a point to say his team needs to fight through the growing pains and learn to play more “aggressively” with a lead.
Josh McDaniels: "There's an art to learning how to finish the game the right way ...— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) September 19, 2022
"We have to learn how to play aggressively with a lead." #Raiders
There is no doubt, the Raiders must learn and grow from one of the most disappointing losses in regular-season history. The Raiders became the fifth NFL team to blow a 20-0 halftime lead as they saw the Arizona Cardinals take a 29-23 win in overtime. The Raiders had never blown such a big lead before and never lost while leading in the fourth quarter by 16 points.
While the loss was highly improbable and stunning, it was easy to see how it happened. The Raiders stalled on offense and the Cardinals controlled the ball in the second half and in overtime. The Cardinals ran 59 offensive plays after halftime as they outscored Las Vegas 29-3.
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr threw for 210 yards in the first half and 42 after that. After the game, Carr set the tone for McDaniels’ aggression talk on Monday.
“We have to learn how to win, and it starts with me. It always will. For the execution that we had in the first half, we did not execute each play with the detail I think that we should have the way that we did in the first half. Just one thing here, one thing there and it looks like a bad play and we’re this close to having another good half,” Carr said. “There were a couple of times [I was] looking for someone downfield, or this, or that; and one thing messes up and that’s a bad play. It goes back to what coach [McDaniels] says, ’Do our job. ’No matter what the score is, if you just do your job at the end, it’ll take care of itself.”
Carr said the team much watch the ugly game film (they’re doing that today), take their medicine and prepare for Sunday’s game at the Tennessee Titans to try to avoid starting the season 0-3.
“I think it goes exactly back to – when we go back and watch it tomorrow – we’re going to see, this play or that play, and this play and that play. It’s just one thing, one detail, that we talked about over and over again, and if we would just do right, all the time,” Carr said. “That’s easier said than done. It takes years; it takes time. It takes all that kind of stuff to do it. But that’s the demand, that’s what it is.
“We’re going to watch it and it’s going to be hard for some guys. It’s going to be hard for everybody. Last week was hard for me to watch, but the more that we can take it – with me being optimistic – this crap isn’t over. We feel crappy right now, but we are still a good football team. Making sure we keep that mindset not, ‘Oh no, it’s over.’ I’ve been doing this a while, man. I know we have good guys that work hard and care, so I know that we can pull ourselves out of it, but it’s going to take us doing it the right way.”