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Monday, September 9, 2013
Upon Further Review: Raiders Week 1

By Paul Gutierrez

An examination of four hot issues from the Oakland Raiders21-17 loss at the Indianapolis Colts:

Terrelle Pryor
Terrelle Pryor joined some elite company with his dual-threat performance on Sunday.
It’s TP2 Time: Even if Terrelle Pryor is not Mr. Right for the Raiders, it’s obvious he’s Mr. Right Now. Pryor’s playmaking ability and his knack for extending plays and, thus, hiding some deficiencies in the offensive line gave the Raiders a shot at upsetting the host Colts. He became just the seventh QB to pass for at least 200 yards (217) and rush for 100 (112) in a regular-season game, joining the likes of Michael Vick, who did it twice, Randall Cunningham, Cam Newton, Aaron Brooks, Steve Young and Donovan McNabb. “I wanted to dice 'em up,” Pryor said, reflecting upon his fateful final drive, on which he led the Raiders to the Colts' 8-yard line but suffered a 16-yard sack before throwing an interception at the 6-yard line.

King’s issues: Punter Marquette King was anything but proud of his first-ever NFL game. “I just have to watch film,” he lamented, “and take notes.” And he needs to regain his confidence going forward. Sure, he averaged 50.5 yards on two punts, but his net was only 29 yards after his first punt -- which he mis-hit and which was fielded off the ground and returned 23 yards by T.Y. Hilton -- and his second just missed being downed inside the 5-yard line and instead rolled into the end zone for a touchback. Plus, King was the holder on Sebastian Janikowski’s missed 48-yard field goal attempt to end the first half, the first time SeaBass missed from inside 50 yards since 2011. "It’s my fault," King said. "It’s me." Of course, there was also his getting "blasted" covering on his first punt. "I got kind of dizzy getting up," King said. "But I’m tough. I’m a football player at the end of the day, so I took it."

East side problems: The last time the Raiders won a game in the Eastern time zone? Try Dec. 6, 2009, when Bruce Gradkowski led a comeback in Pittsburgh. Since then, Oakland is 0-11 playing three time zones away, being outscored by a combined 353-178 and losing by an average score of 32-16. Since Dec. 15, 2002, when the Raiders lost at Miami, Oakland is 5-28 in the Eastern time zone. The Raiders have two more games on the East Coast this season, playing at both the New York Giants (Nov. 10) and New York Jets (Dec. 8).

Of explosive plays: Coach Dennis Allen made a point last season to make “explosive plays” -- plays that gain at least 16 yards through the air or 12 yards on the ground -- a point of emphasis. Limit the opponents' while maximizing your own, and your chances for victory increase. So how did the Raiders do against the Colts? Oakland had nine explosive plays -- six passes and three runs -- all by Pryor. Indianapolis had eight explosive plays, five through the air and three on the ground. None of the Raiders’ plays, though, ended as scores, while a 20-yard Andrew Luck pass and a 19-yard Luck run were TDs.