Sunday, December 8, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Oakland Raiders
By Paul Gutierrez
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- A few thoughts on the Oakland Raiders' 37-27 loss to the New York Jets:
What it means: Try as they might to dismiss the gravity of the situation, the Raiders have now lost 13 straight games in the Eastern time zone, dating to Dec. 6, 2009, while getting outscored by a combined 416-225, and they are a combined 5-30 three time zones away since Dec. 15, 2002. And Oakland's defense allowed a heretofore struggling Jets offense -- New York had scored a combined 20 points in its previous three games -- to get on track to score a season high in points, while a blocked punt for a touchdown also helped the Jets. It was the Raiders' fifth defeat in six games.
Stock watch: Rising -- Marcel Reece. The purported “matchup nightmare” showed exactly why and how he garnered that moniker as the Pro Bowl fullback started at tailback, with Rashad Jennings, Darren McFadden and Jeremy Stewart all injured and inactive, and broke off a career-long 63-yard touchdown run. He finished with 123 yards rushing on 19 carries to become the first player to rush for 100 yards against the Jets this season, He also had two receptions for 38 yards.
A familiar face: The last time Terrelle Pryor saw the field, it was this field ... on Nov. 10 ... against the New York Giants. Ineffectiveness and injury sent Pryor to the sidelines and put Matt McGloin under center. But Pryor had one series in this game, after two ineffective series by McGloin, and moved the offense to the tune of five first downs and a field goal. It was the only action he saw, though.
Defense sans a D: Oakland's defense, having last played on Thanksgiving Day, should have been fresher, right? Alas, poor tackling reared its ugly head again and the third-down defense was atrocious. The Jets converted seven of their first 12 third-down conversions, which contributed to the Raiders' defense tiring late and contributing to the poor tackling.
What's next: The Raiders (4-9) play host to the Kansas City Chiefs (10-3) in only their second home game since Nov. 4. It will be the first of three straight games against AFC West opponents to close the season. On Oct. 13, the Raiders jumped to a 7-0 lead that would have been 10-0 were it not for a missed Sebastian Janikowski field goal. The then-undefeated Chiefs sacked Pryor nine times in a 24-7 Kansas City victory.