The Oakland Raiders had another blown lead in the second half against the Miami Dolpins, losing 20-28.
So what went wrong?
It wasn’t necessarily the defense, though Jon Gruden has been calling for a pass rush after trading away Khalil Mack. I get the logistics of the trade. I am just tired of Gruden whining about the lack of something he had control over. With Justin Ellis injured, where is the experience on the line? Frostee Rucker?
Let’s place blame where it belongs, on the coaching to start, offense being the second culprit. Derek Carr threw two interceptions, one very late when he forced a throw. Isn’t that something he said he wouldn’t do?
On offense, the Raiders left too many points on the field. We can start with not feeding the beast, Marshawn Lynch, when there was fourth and goal with half a yard to go. Instead, Gruden went with a carry by blocking fullback Keith Smith. This is the second time Smith failed to do what he was supposed to do on a fourth down play. The Raiders came away with zero points.
On goal to go, the Raiders were one for three.
Red zone efficiency was less than stellar. The Raiders were three for five in the red zone. They came away with no points twice, and two crucial turnovers, the one on downs and the interception.
I am putting this again, squarely on the shoulders of the coaching staff.
No one there seems to realize that Reggie Nelson is a liability on defense. My seven-year old grandson could get a first on a pass play against Nelson, and that’s with me throwing the ball. Granted, Karl Joseph got hurt, but can ANYONE tell me another team where Nelson would be a starting safety? He’s 35 years old, but according to the defensive coordinator, Paul Guenther, the media and fans just pick on Nelson.
I will reiterate again, though, this game lies squarely on the shoulders of the failed offense, which despite Greg Olsen being the offensive coordinator, lies on Gruden.
Time of possession went to the Raiders. Total offensive plays? Raiders. Total yards? Raiders. Score? That was the Dolphins, along with turnovers.
The officiating was a wash. Bad calls went to both sides of the ball, but they did miss a big block to the back on Gareon Conley on a touchdown play for the Dolphins.
Those that know the game look at Gruden. He has his favorite players. He has “his guys”. Until he can put his ego down and look at the team, this will keep happening. This offense and Carr can’t push the plays they need to make when Gruden, with an assist by Olsen, is trying to push his guys to get the stats to prove he is right.
Along those lines, let’s hit a cut made by Gruden for money reasons, allegedly. He cut Marquette King as a punter. I was told by fans all over that a punter doesn’t matter. I think that 37.3 yards a punt is not acceptable. When the Raiders needed a big boot, Johnny Townsend gave the Dolphins the ball at the Raiders 35 yard line. That’s an untenable position for the defense.
I have no faith in Gruden, Olsen, or this new “complex” offense. Carr needs to play with his heart and quit listening to the sideline if the Raiders are going to even compete this season.
That’s all I have.
Win, lose, or tie, RAIDERS (not the coaching staff), till I die!