Monday, December 25, 2017

Eagles Gameday Thread

Hard to muster much of a take here unless the Raiders muster a good effort tonight. From here on out, it's all about pride and poise, do they have it?


Blogger Raider Take said...

The play calling in that last 20 seconds with 3 timeouts is a fireable offense for Downing. Sorry.

8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Last night Downing was a minor problem. If the Raiders don't turn the ball over 5 times they win going away. Carr was awful and that can not blammed only on Downing or the pass rush.

Lynch aside from his turnover was great and I hope he is back next year.

Happy Holidays

4:44 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

RT, 100% agree, but cameras showed during the last timeout, with 3 seconds left, Del Rio agreeing with Downing that it would be easier for the Raiders to lateral their way into the end zone from 70 yards yards out than to throw a ball downfield and hope for a defensive penalty to give them a chance for a FG attempt.

One is as clueless as the other. I'm not sure just getting rid of Downing will be enough.

And going for it on 4th down at mid-field early in the game, against the NFL's best defense was stupid and reckless... assuming you're trying to win.

Hats off to Pagano, who brought the defense back to some respectability. But this is not a well-coached team.

At a point of epic failure, it has to fall on Del Rio, then McKenzie. Somebody in the organization has to be smarter than what we're witnessing.

5:52 AM  
Blogger Raider Take said...

True, Sandy, the loss wasn't Downing's fault. At the same time, it was a fireable offense. Especially after what we've seen this season.

1st down, 17 seconds, three timeouts, down by just three points, needing to gain only 35-40 yards for a shot at a game-tying field goal.

In that situation, you call plays that at least have a chance to get you that yardage--not plays that have NO chance to get you that yardage. Inexcusable, cannot happen, and a fireable offense.

9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


We all agree Downing must go and he will. Do you want Del Rio gone at this point also? Last night was an epic failure 5 turnovers, team looked unorganized at times. Carr was brutal.

It's a shame because they were finally doing what you have advocated all year which playing power ball with Kelchi, Hudson and Jackson combined with Lynch that looked great against a stout d-line. You were down on Lynch earlier this year maybe because of your distaste for his anthem protest you have to admit that the second half of the year he has looked fast and strong.

What about Sean Smith? Should he back next year he has been great the last three weeks.

Happy New Year

10:12 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Yes, power blocking has brought some life back to the run game, but it is utilized in such a vanilla and predictable manner. The Raiders use ZERO play action. And they lack adequate protection for Carr to be effective. Carr really sucked last night, throwing off his back foot a lot, lobbing more balls up in the air. As the stats proved, he's been a liability to the Raiders this year when pressured. Last year, Musgrave used a lot of big protection packages.

IMO, for all the years we watched the Raiders operate with the worst offenses in modern history, this one might get the prize... worsened by the fact the Raiders have proven talent on their roster (which past teams did not!).

And Del Rio's inability to recognize (and correct) the shortcomings of his team's offense is scary. Aside from more north/south running, what was different about last night's first half that would make anyone think changes were made? Run on 1st and 2nd down, throw short on 3rd and long. The double move in the 2nd half that allowed Cooper to score was a gift because I don't remember the Raiders throwing down field again all game.

Kudos to improved coaching on D that kept us in that game. If nothing else, Pagano showed us that coaching and playcalling can make a huge difference.

I don't know the inner workings, or what Del Rio's excuse is for allowing this to go on all year long. And maybe McKenzie was the reason Musgrave left without a new contract. The answers to those questions would impact my opinion to fire Del Rio. Certainly, there is ample reason to consider it.

Re: Lynch, I don't care if he sits. That was kept pretty quiet until, well, it wasn't. Last night's fumble aside, he is amazing at ball security... something the Raiders sucked at this year. Lynch could have been so much better in a better system... e.g., one that he runs behind power blocking and one that doesn't ever throw him the ball.

Since I'm here, might as well finish the list.

2017 Winners:
Bowman (he's the leader of a new and improved D - need to re-sign him yesterday!)
Irving (another solid year... his best as a Raider)
Hudson (iron man, best Raiders center since Robbins)
Mack (he's Mack!)
Cook (another grossly underutilized player)
Patterson (quietly the Raiders' best pick-up during the off-season)

Honorable Mention:
Sean Smith (he improved when the Raiders played more zone)
TJ Carrie (I think he led the team in tackles - no easy task on any team).
Kelechie (still one of the best)
Autry (he stepped up into a much bigger role)
Vanderhouse (solid rookie season!)
Lynch (if for no other reason than his hard style running and ball security... no matter how many try to pry it away from him).

2017 Losers:
Norton, Jr.
Del Rio
... in that order....but Norton got fired first.
Carr (it's impossible to point to what he's done well this year)
ALL RAIDERS WIDE RECEIVERS (collectively a record worst group of drop balls in the NFL)
Newhouse (this was a bad pick-up by the Raiders from the start; which will be made worse if they retain him)
Richard (big drop off from his rookie season - he's struggled to field punts, and lost some fumbles, including a big one last night).

The biggest disappointment about this year is that it was mostly self-inflicted, starting with coaching.

11:36 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

From PFT: "Consider this: The Raiders started six drives at their own 40 or better last night, and they turned those six drives into a grand total of zero points. They’re the first team in 16 years to accomplish that feat. Congratulations?"

It's as bad as we think it is. Maybe worse.

2:15 PM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

Last night was the best Lynch played since the Jets game in Week 2. Carr was deplorable last night, and you can tell he and the WRs are not on the same page due to the difference in play calling from this year and last. The one thing that still bugs me about Downing was disallowing Carr to check the play off pre-snap, and audible to another.
Sean Smith's play since Norton was let go proves how play-calling and scheme can affect a game. Dude looked like a different player after Norton was let go. Pagano came in and started playing to the player's strengths (i.e. blitzing Bowman and Irvin, playing man on the line, and zone in the DB). The play-calling, scheme, and taking away Carr's right to audible has killed our offense this year, and that falls squarely on Downing. I am hoping we get Mike McCoy as OC next season. Not only does he utilize power blocking offense, but he knows how to utilize the TE's and players like Olawale.

RT, I agree with your winners, honorable mention, and losers for the 2017 season. However, under Honorable Mention I would like to add the following:
Nick Morrow
Gabe Jackson
Cordarrelle Patterson
Dexter McDonald
Antonio Hamilton

The last 2 came in during our injury plagued DB and pretty much held their own. Hamilton went out with an injury; but I was impressed with how those two not only stepped into the fire, but stepped up. I think those two could be challenging for a starter position next season. We will see how Conley and Melifonwu step up next season too. Jon Feliciano was missed after his injury.

I would also like to add Giorgio Tavecchio to the Winners list. I hope this wasn't the last we saw of SeaBass, but if so, I am confident in Tavecchio; a pretty reliable kicker with a great back story. I don't know if he could ever boom a 60+ yard field goal though. If it was the end for SeaBass he will land somewhere. Let's just hope its not Denver, KC, the Chargers, or the Patriots.

I hope you all had a tremendous Christmas, despite the loss. God bless you guys, and JUST WIN, BABY!

2:31 PM  
Anonymous Raider00 said...

Very concerned with Derek Carr and his "floating" passes. I listened to the game on radio, and the announcer kept using term floating to describe Carr's throws. Not once or twice, but all game long.

On the 4th quarter pick, announcer said, "And Carr floats it down field...intercepted!".

It's great that Carr has touch on his passes. But sometimes you have to throw the ball hard.

This idea that Carr can throw soft passes all the time will not work in the NFL. In fact, we've already seen it not working this year.

Are Carr's throws taking too long to get to receivers, giving DB's a chance to close ground, and break up pass?

So much on the offense has regressed this year under JDR & Downing. Look at what the Rams are doing with a good coaching staff as opposed to the previous regime. It makes you wonder.

4:31 PM  
Blogger nyraider said...

00 - Carr has been under pressure all season, and mostly throws off his back foot. He is not stepping into passes. I think he "floated" more passes Monday than any other game this year. Also, he seems to have happy feet and sometimes looks scared, so he dumps the ball off a lot.

Regardless of scheme, Carr has looked awful this year. If he can't figure it out, he should start returning some of the $25mm a year in his new contract.

5:38 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Guys, Del Rio deserves a hard look before coming back as HC.

He played major role in dismantling a top NFL offense, letting a vet OC walk, and hiring a rookie OC, and then watched as that rookie OC sabotaged an entire season.

He waited far too long to give Norton the hook and, presumably, put his own fingerprint on the defense before resorting to firing his DC.

Now, at the end of the season, he looks like a deer caught in the headlights. He has no answers.

After this year, what NFL team would hire Del Rio as HC? Honestly, who would hire him as DC? He's proven to be way too laid back in his approach, and it's cost the Raiders.

Q: Should Mark Davis call Chucky? Gruden sounds interested in coaching again, and would be a good fit for a talented team with nowhere to go but up.

5:53 AM  
Anonymous Raider00 said...

We have to be honest about the defense also. Has the D looked better under Pagano, yes. But lets be real.

Vs Donks, faced backup Qb. Giants, backup Qb. Dallas, no E.E. Philly, backup Qb.

NYR, I agree. Everything must be on the table in off season. Every area given an honest, hard look.

6:35 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Sit Derek Carr against the Chargers, not because he sucks this year, but because the Raiders should not risk losing him to another injury (when OC and possibly HC have one foot out the door). Makes perfect sense. Article below.

2:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Depending on what happens going forward this drat two - three years later could be a gem. Vanderdoes and Hester look serviceable at a minimum as rotation players. Morrow a future starter. Within two years I could see Luani, Obi, Conley and Sharpe starting and with Lee a back up. I would say that is not a bad haul.

Regarding Del Rio I think he is above average coach but not elite especially when it come to tactics. I like Norv Turner as the next OC.

Mack is top three defensive player in the league as long as he stays healthy. Carr getting back to staring is what concerns me without him playing first class all is lost.

Happy Holidays

6:24 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

Would Norv come back to the Raiders though? Highly doubt it, especially after the "Al Davis treatment" he got. I'd still like to see Mike McCoy, or John DeFilippo. I'd prefer McCoy over DeFilippo because of the experience factor. But there could be some interesting scenarios too. If the Browns fire Hue Jackson, would Hue go to College ranks, or back as an OC somewhere? I'd love to see what Hue could do with the talent the Raiders have. If we don't stick with Pagano as DC, Vance Joseph is on the hot seat in Denver, especially with John Elway's impatience. If he is one and done, the Raiders could take advantage there and bring him in as a DC.

Another scenario that is intriguing to me is if the Colts let Chuck Pagano go as HC. We could hire him as OC and keep his brother at DC and have both Pagano's running the show as Coordinators and Assistant Head Coaches. I think that scenario would give Del Rio the edge he needs to get over the hump. So could Hue Jackson as OC. What I like about Hue and Chuck Pagano is they both run power offense. None of the weak ZBS crap that college runs. I'm not completely against ZBS, there is a time and good use for it, but as your overall system? Forget it. NFL is just too fast for ZBS, and it doesn't give you an edge.

It looks like Eli Apple may be cut by the Giants, I think that would be a terrific offseason pick up if it comes to fruition. Apple and Conley on the corners, let that sink in for a moment. Apple is a hard worker, but the Giants are saying he is a cancer. Not sure I by that, considering the whole organization is falling apart at the seems with McAdoo-doo (who I think is the real cancer). If they let him go, the Raiders should pounce, and have 2 young stud CBs set for the future.

As far as the draft. I think both Right and Left Tackle are priority. Mike McGlinchey (LT, Notre Dame) should be our first pick. Kolton Miller (OT, UCLA) could be picked up in the late 2-3 round. Scouts view him as a potential RT, especially since he struggled at LT this season. Another good pick in later rounds would be Connor Williams (OT, Texas). He'd be a high first round pick if he didn't get injured this season vs. USC; but the dude would be an ideal "steal" in later rounds.

Both ILB and OLB should also be a focus this offseason. Malik Jackson (ILB, Texas) would be a terrific 2nd Rounder. I know we have Bowman, but it would be good to have depth here. Malik gives us that depth. James Hearns (OLB, Louisville) would be a good 3-4 Round pick for us as well.

I think another position the Raiders really need to consider is WR. I think we need a solid guy at this position. My early round pick for this position would be Equanimeous St. Brown (WR, Notre Dame). Dude is 6'4, 216 lbs! With his size, he could create problems with DB's like Talib, and use his physicality to create space. Something that Crabtree and Cooper have seemed to fail at; and something the Raiders sorely need. His size alone creates double teams with CB and S; which would also free up Crabs and Coop.

Another potential pick, that is currently a late round pick, but I think is going to rise, is Jaleel Scott (WR, New Mexico State). He is 6'6, 215 lbs. My only concern is the small school, and not knowing too much about his athleticism.

11:17 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

That's pretty generous, Sandy, considering past drafts. If you remove Mack and Carr (who played awful this year), there's not a lot of meat left from recent drafts.

Best of the rest:
- Cooper is this year's version of Darious Heywood Bey.
- Edwards, Jr. is good when he plays, but he was drafted with injury history, and continues that trend.
- Ward is a huge disappointment, and was drafted way to high as an inexperienced project player.
- Calhoun has already been released once. 2x if you count this coming off-season.
- Jackson is solid at G, but he's not been getting high marks recently, getting stuffed by defenders.
- TJ Carrie is hanging in there. Not great but has flashes of real talent.
- Walford is another big disappointment. He was supposed to be the Raiders next great TE
- Joseph has struggled in coverage but has flashes in run D and blitzing.
- Alexander is still very much worth his 7th round selection... but can't break the line-up against weak competition at RT.

I like Morrow, Lunai, and Conley (looked great when he played). Also, I think Sharpe has to step up or Raiders will need another solution to replace Penn, maybe soon! Obi is athletic but the Raiders ask too much of him. He might not be the guy.

When you look at the list of picks that didn't cut it, it's a bit daunting. Guys the Raiders banked on, like DJ Hayden, Menelik Watson, Sio Moore, Ben Heeney (who was left to play MLB all alone on the 2016 roster), and several listed above.

IMO, Raiders need to stop going after project players high in the draft and strike a better balance with free agency.


11:39 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

This year has been a complete farce. That McKenzie and Del Rio - who drafted and signed FA linemen to power block - would allow a rookie OC to come in and fail for the entire season under a system steeped in ZB speaks to their own incompetence.

This is what leads me to think a larger shake-up might be needed. But Mark Davis is incapable of handling this properly. He's over his head too.

11:52 AM  
Blogger nyraider said...

Waking up to lots of Gruden rumors today. This will be interesting to watch. Some reports say Derek Carr is one reason Gruden will not come back to Oakland. I don't believe that. I think Reggie McKenzie is the primary reason Gruden will not come back. It will take McKenzie being fired. Why would Gruden want to be strapped with McKenzie's personnel decisions, which have been highly questionable since his arrival.

IMO, Del Rio lacked presence and decision-making this year. The move to promote Downing and then watch as he dismantled the offense is inexcusable. And McKenzie has been less than stellar. He probably should have already been fired.

In the end, dropping from possible SB contender to top 10 draft pick was very uninspiring, and has nowhere to go.

This is a no-brainer. Chucky, Part Deux!

(What would AL say about Gruden coming back, with a possible ownership stake??)


6:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy New Year 00, Nate, NY, RT. All the best to you and your family in 2018, a healthy happy new year.

Waking up to the Gruden news is awesome let's hope it is true. NY I think Gruden loves Carr actually. Regardless, if Gruden comes or not at least Mark is taking action and I think this spells the end of Del Rio either way.

All the best

7:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anybody else celebrating their 50th anniversary?

It was on December 31st, 1967 that my father took me to the AFL championship game in Oakland. We beat Houston 40-7. We lost the Super Bowl to Green Bay but Oh, the memories!

Happy New Year


10:09 AM  
Anonymous Raider Nate 75 said...

WOW! Brother,my first game was the 83-84 Championship game against the Seahags. My dad got tickets from Al Davis. So it hasn't been 50 years for me (not even that old either), but it is one of the milestones I look forward too. Happy Anniversary.

I hope the Gruden rumors are just that, rumors. I'm not sure he is the "difference" maker we need at HC. Not sure at this point that Mark Davis is willing to give up McKenzie. Despite McKenzie's issues, he brought the Raiders out of salary cap issues that Al left us in, and brought talent that we lacked. Donald Penn, Osemele, Bowman, Amerson, Lynch, Crabtree, Patterson, and Irvin to name a few. He has missed on some drafts, but has nailed it with Mack, Carr, Gabe Jackson, Joseph. He has landed some tremendous undrafted players like Richard, Morrow, Set Roberts to name a few. Some of his recent picks need at least one more season to tell how they will pan out (Vanderdoes, Conley, and Melinfonwu). I think he has been a decent GM, even though I think there are improvements he can make. He cannot ignore the CB and LB needs anymore, and I think he needs to start looking at our RB situation.

With that said, my unsupport for Gruden doesn't reflect that I think Del Rio is the guy. I'm concerned he and his coaching staff took 3 steps back this season after taking a huge leap forward last year. That falls on Todd Downing, mostly, but also on Del Rio for not correcting the issue earlier, and not communicating what he wanted with Downing. At the end of it, I would like Del Rio to have one more year, and get an OC he wants that will work with the talent and strengths of the team. But Downing is clearly not that guy. If Del Rio cannot turn it around next season, he should be gone. But I think in order for that to happen, he is going to have to be more assertive with his Coordinators, and what he wants to see happen. I don't think that is his style, which is why I don't think he may be the coach we need.

Gruden is assertive as an offensive dude, but not a defense guy. I think this team has the talent on both sides of the ball to be dominant. We need a coach that can be assertive on both sides of the ball to help develop that. We will see what happens. Happy New Year everyone. JUST WIN, BABY!

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