Oakland Raiders v Jacksonville Jaguars - Studs & Duds
David Wilson – Oct 22, 2012
A win is a win, and at the end of the day that is all that is all that counts. But just like there were many positives to take last week from the loss against Atlanta, there were plenty of negatives to take from this win against Jacksonville.
The Raiders beat the Jaguars at home in overtime, after putting themselves down 20-6 in the third quarter mostly due to their own mistakes. That fact that they struggled to beat a bad Jacksonville team that was without it’s starting quarterback and star running back for much of the game won’t exactly inspire the Raider Nation. If Blaine Gabbert and Maurice Jones-Drew had played the whole game, the result may well have been different.
But as I said, a win is a win, and credit needs to be given for the spirit it took for this team to fight back from a 20-6 third quarter deficit.
Here are the studs & duds for week seven.
Lamarr Houston DE – A tremendous performance from Houston, who was responsible for this win as much as player on the team. He made eight tackles from his defensive end position, which is impressive in itself, but the nature of those tackles was even more impressive. Houston consistently set the edge on the left side of the line to contain the running game, and crashed inside to make tackles there too. He sniffed out a screen pass in the third quarter and made the tackle for no gain, and also got himself on the sack sheet by beating his man with a great inside move. In overtime, Houston hustled down field to tackle Cecil Shorts from behind after a quick pass over the middle, and in doing so caused the fumble that handed the game to the Raiders. Houston was dominant today, and this was the best performance of his three year career.
Miles Burris – LB – Another player who got himself on the sack sheet (for the first time), helping to stop a Jaguars drive, and collecting another six tackles on the day. Burris continues to show great hustle and tackling ability all across the field. His ability to press through traffic and get to the ball carrier in the backfield was his trademark in college, and he is now beginning to do it regularly for the Raiders. Burris made a great tackle on Rashad Jennings up the middle on a third and one in the second quarter, and made several other important plays. He missed one tackle in the backfield early against Jones-Drew, but that was his only poor play. It is no secret why Burris is getting the call as nickel linebacker over McClain.
Richard Seymour DT – A return to form for Richard Seymour who looked strong all day against the run, and generated pressure in the passing game, coming up with a key sack in overtime. Great players come up big when you need them, and Seymour did that on Sunday. He made three tackles and an assist on the day and was penalty free, which is more than can be said of three other players on the defensive line.
Michael Huff CB – Another solid performance by Huff, who gave up little and helped keep Jacksonville to 155 net yards passing. He covered well consistently, and I counted at least two passes defended. Huff’s vastly improved play at cornerback has made a big difference to this Raiders defense, which is something that has been sorely needed with the depth issues in the secondary.
Carson Palmer QB – Some might be wondering why Palmer is on this list, as he did not exactly light the field up. He threw a pic too, but in the end got the Raiders the win. Again, Oakland had nothing on offense but Palmer’s arm. The offensive line didn’t protect him either, and he was under pressure all day. The offense only really got going in the second half when they went no huddle and Palmer called the plays. Those plays he called got the Raiders two touchdowns and put them back in a game they ultimately would win. It frightens me to think how bad this offense would be without Palmer.
Honorable Mention – Rolando McClain made good plays in both against run and in coverage. He diagnosed a short pass play well in the second quarter, picked up the running back out of the backfield and knocked the ball away. Maybe being a part time player suits him. Desmond Bryant applied some pressure and was strong against the run. He had only two tackles, but man handled offensive linemen on a number of occasions.
Greg Knapp – The Raiders Offensive Coordinator continues to show an inability to generate any kind of running game, and makes the league’s most explosive running back look terrible. The play calling in the first half was shocking, and the offense failed to move the ball against a bad Jacksonville defense. Blockers failed to pick up the blitz or adjust to stunts to protect their star quarterback, and until Palmer started calling the plays in the second half this team never looked like making it to the end zone. Cooper Carlisle & Mike Brisiel are not the answers at guard, but we have yet to see any action for promising rookies Tony Bergstrom or Lucas Nix. Words fail me at how inept this man is, and Dennis Allen is paying a heavy price for his faith in him.
Dennis Allen – Numerous pre snap penalties had this team back to it’s old habits again. Oakland had burned all it’s time outs with several minutes to go in the fourth quarter, and that could have been decisive if things had gone differently. Sending out the field goal unit on fourth down, with the score at 23-16 made absolutely no sense, and if Palmer had not challenged his coach (which cost the last time out), then this game would have been lost. This team was badly prepared and the coaching has in no way impressed me. Allen continues to show faith in Greg Knapp, and that may ultimately cost this team a number of wins, and possibly even Allen his job.
Matt Shaughnessy DE – The normally consistent Shaughnessy had a poor showing, being dominated by the Jaguars left tackle Eugene Monroe. He was mostly a non-factor in the game, generating no pass rush and only collecting one assist on a tackle. He was called for an off side penalty, but was otherwise invisible.
The Offensive Line – Normally just Willie Smith is on here, but this time it is the whole crew. Despite the Jaguars being last in the league in sacks, this line failed to protect Carson Palmer, and he was knocked around all day. He was sacked twice, knocked down 11 times, and was forced to hurry his throws a further 12 times. A failure to adjust to/pick up blitzes and stunts, and an average of under three yards per carry in the running game completed what was as miserable a day for a Raiders offensive line as I have seen. Jared Veldheer again gave up a blind side sack that caused a Palmer fumble, and this group seems to be going from bad to worse.
Against low quality opposition, at home, the Raiders squeezed out a win in overtime. Carson Palmer and the defense did it in spite of, not with the assistance of, the Raider coaching staff.
This game does not bode well for the rest of the season, and if their level of coaching and overall play does not improve, then the Raiders will find themselves in the NFL basement this year.
A win is a win though, and I will take it and be happy right now.
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