One Postgame Take
Now, two games later, the comet has crashed to earth. And unless we can win four out of the next five games, our divisional title hopes will likely be dashed, because it looks nine wins will be the minimum to contend.
Meanwhile, three wins over the next five games are necessary to reach the .500 mark. I would suppose that Tom Cable's tenure hangs in the balance of that eight-win mark. But who really knows?
The offense is the obvious culprit for our recent woes. But buried in the smoking rubble is that our defense has allowed 902 offensive yards over the past two games. We have allowed 180+ net yards rushing in each of the past two games.
On the other side of the ball, how does Darren McFadden get just two yards on eight carries? I don't know which is more absurd: the .25 yards rushing average, or the fact that he only got eight carries. His stats weren't much better the previous week.
I doubt that McFadden's abilities suddenly evaporated. Other teams aren't respecting our passing game, and our offensive line doesn't seem stout enough to do anything about it. Hence, the running game has been shut down.
According to Cable, "This isn't anything new for us. You're going to see eight- and nine-man boxes. That's what happens when you're a good running team. Our system has been built to handle that."
Alas, "systems" don't play the games. It seems to me that we have nagging deficiencies at quarterback, wide receiver and offensive line. Combine that with a defense that seems to be regressing, and we suddenly find ourselves wondering what's up with this team.
In other words, are the Raiders still climbing out of the hole—or are they climbing back in?
I still expect eight wins this season. Anything less would be unacceptable. I'm sure that Mr. Davis would agree with that. In other words, it's time for a turnaround.