Dissecting the 'Pryor Package'

December, 13, 2013
12/13/13
8:00
AM ET
ALAMEDA, Calif. -- Oakland Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Olson shed a little bit more light Thursday on the thought process that went into the team's decision to play Terrelle Pryor for just one series in the team's loss at the New York Jets last weekend.

Basically, with three tailbacks inactive due to injury in Rashad Jennings, Darren McFadden and Jeremy Stewart, and Pryor -- a running quarterback -- practicing without a brace on his right knee for the first time in a month, it was scripted in the game plan to get Pryor in for the Raiders' third offensive series, no matter the score at the time, and then put Matt McGloin back in.

McGloin
Pryor
"There was probably a good chance (the Jets) hadn't been practicing the arc option series that we had shown earlier, because we hadn't done it the last few weeks," Olson said.

"We were going to try and cheat and find a way to get some explosive plays."

And while Pryor did jumpstart the offense by leading a 14-play, 58-yard drive that culminated with a 41-yard Sebastian Janikowski field goal -- after Janikowski missed a 52-yarder a series earlier -- those "explosive" plays were not involved.

Which made the decision to go back to McGloin easier.

But when McGloin threw an interception from his own end zone on his next series and then went three-and-out before Marquette King's punt was blocked and returned for a touchdown and the Raiders trailed 20-3, there was a thought of replacing McGloin with Pryor again in the second half.

But just for another possession, here or there.

And for what it's worth, McGloin said he did not find any benefit in sitting out a series.

"No, I don't think so," he said this week. "Any time you're in or out it's kind of tough, but it's still not an excuse."

McGloin was also asked if it made it easier to deal with, then, knowing in advance he would be coming out for a series.

"It was part of the game plan," he said. "We're trying to do what's best for the team. Everybody thought that was going to help us, it was going to get us some momentum, and we didn't think (the Jets) were going to be prepared for it so we tried to throw them off balance.

"Like I said, it was a game plan thing and at the end of the day we all want to win and I'll do whatever it takes, the guys on the team will do whatever it takes, the coaching staff will do whatever it takes, to make sure we're put in the best position to win."

McGloin settled in after halftime and led the Raiders offense to four scores. The threat of Pryor running was not needed again, not with Oakland playing catch up against the Jets all day.

Would the Raiders unveil the "Terrelle Pryor Package" again Sunday against Kansas City?

Olson was playing coy, as he should. Besides, half of the battle is to keep opponents guessing, right?

"I won't give that away," he said to laughter. "The one thing that comes out of it, obviously, is (foes are) going to have to prepare for it. I said it's not an easy way to do it, not a lot of teams have done it or see it in the NFL, but when we're in the situation we're at, we were looking for playmakers on that particular day.

"With where we were at, we felt like it might be something that we need and we also know that the three remaining opponents that we have, whether we do it or not, are going to have to prepare for it."

Paul Gutierrez

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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