By Steve Corkran
Monday, November 4th, 2013 at 5:13 pm in Oakland Raiders.
Just as people took note of the Raiders defense and included them in the conversation about the league’s better all-around defenses, the Eagles rolled into town and blew through the Raiders defense with the ease of Miguel Cabrera hitting an 85 MPH fastball.
The Eagles amassed 542 yards offense, passed for seven touchdowns and encountered little difficulty against the Raiders.
“I don’t know if we were reading our press clippings or what, but the NFL is all about what have you done for me lately and what do you do out there on Sunday,” Allen said. “If you want to be a top-notch defense you’ve got to bring it every week and we’ve got to do a better job next week.”
Allen on Sunday said that the Raiders rushed three, four, five guys at different times. Yet, nothing seemed to work when it came to trying to get pressure on Nick Foles.
After watching the video, Allen remained steadfast that the Raiders simply didn’t execute well when it came to getting after Foles.
“He was able to stand in the pocket,” Allen said of Foles. “Then, when we did do some things to flush him out of the pocket, he was able to make plays down the field. Obviously, always hindsight is 20-20 and if I knew that he was going to be able to be that effective in throwing the ball down the field, maybe we could have brought a few more pressures and maybe affected him. But there wasn’t a whole lot that we did in that game that did a lot to affect him.”
In the process, the Raiders got rolled by an Eagles team that struggled in recent games, Foles included — he completed 11 of 29 passes for 80 yards in his previous game.
The faceplant prevented the Raiders from evening their record at 4-4, remaining in the thick of the playoff hunt and making the kind of move that Allen sensed they were capable of making going into the game.
“Yeah, we missed an opportunity,” Allen said. “Now, exactly what does that mean? We had an opportunity to come in and play a game at home, get our record to .500, which would have been very beneficial to this football team from a confidence standpoint.”
– Quarterback Terrelle Pryor walked through the locker room without any apparent lingering effects from the right knee injury he suffered against the Eagles.
Coach Deniis Allen said Pryor is “day-to-day,” which means no one will really know how Pryor is going to hold up until Pryor’s able to show what he can do on the practice field.
Rookie Matt McGloin replaced Pryor late in the game and completed 7 of 15 passes for 87 yards in his NFL debut. Here’s Allen’s summation of McGloin’s performance in mop-up duty.
“Matt did some good things,” Allen said. “He drove us down there at the end of the game and got us a touchdown there at the end of the game. That was good to see, for him to get in there and get some experience. Obviously, there was a couple of plays that maybe he could have made that we weren’t able to make. But for the first time out there, he did some good things.”
– In addition to the injuries to Pryor and McFadden, Allen said wide receiver Juron Criner suffered a shoulder injury against the Eagles, right offensive tackle Matt McCants injured a toe and kicker Sebastian Janikowski hurt his ribs.
McCants exited the locker room Monday with a protective boot on his right foot. If he can’t play against the Giants, it’s likely that rookie Menelik Watson or veteran Tony Pashos will get the nod.
– Speaking of Watson, he made his regular-season debut against the Eagles as a result of the injury to McCants.
From afar, it appeared as if Watson fared pretty well in his first action since he played in one exhibition game.
“He did some good things,” Allen said. “There’s some things that we can build with with him. There’s some good things that we can build on.”
Watson wasn’t available during media access Monday. We’ll see if we can track him down Wednesday and get his assessment.
– Pryor went 90 passes without an interception at one point this season. Now, he has seven in his past 79 attempts. As a result, some say Pryor is regressing.
“I’m not seeing that term at all,” Allen said. “I’m still seeing a guy that’s progressing. I’m still seeing a guy who still makes some young player mistakes. But also I’m seeing overall with our passing game everybody is involved. A lot of times you just look at the quarterback position and everything is based on the quarterback and that’s the way of the NFL.”
In other words, don’t be so quick to give Pryor credit for everything when things go well and don’t assume that Pryor is all at fault when the Raiders struggle.
Also, keep in mind that Pryor passed for 288 yards and ran for 94 against the Eagles in a game in which the Raiders amassed 560 yards offense.
“It might not have looked like some of the other quarterbacks in the league, but we threw for over 330 yards in the game,” Allen said. “So there is some progress there.”