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Monday, September 24, 2012
Moving on: Oakland Raiders

By Bill Williamson

Here are some areas the Oakland Raiders need to focus on after a 34-31 home win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday:

Recap: The Raiders won their first game of the season after an impressive fourth-quarter comeback. According to ESPN Stats & Information, the Raiders lost 48 straight games when trailing by 10 or more points entering the fourth quarter. That streak is over for the Raiders, who trailed 31-21 in the fourth quarter.

Biggest area to fix: The passing defense is a problem. Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw for 386 yards and four touchdowns. The Raiders are so thin at cornerback, Michael Huff has to play cornerback and I see it continuing for now. The Raiders have to find a way to stop the pass with Peyton Manning and Matt Ryan on the horizon.

Biggest area to build on: Darren McFadden. After not being a factor in the running game in the first two games, McFadden had 113 yards rushing, including a 64-yard touchdown run. It was a sign McFadden can succeed in the zone-blocking scheme. The Raiders have to keep on going to McFadden. He is too explosive not to use him.

What to watch for: Dennis Allen goes back to Denver, where he was the Broncos’ defensive coordinator last year, trying to even his team’s record at 2-2.