Ray-Dar: Quick Slants From Week 5


The dubious acronym describes the Oakland Raiders defense in Sunday’s 30-17 defeat at the hands of the visiting Baltimore Ravens.

Instead of saying “No More!” and quelling a determined Ravens offense, the Raiders got the “Bend Over Here It Comes Again” treatment. Jack Del Rio entrusted his defense to get the stop when he elected to punt on 4th-and-3 from the 44 with the Raiders down by 10 in the fourth quarter. Instead, his defense allowed Baltimore to churn out the yards and siphon 6:26 off the clock.

“It’s a big shock. We keep getting our ass whooped,” Raiders running back Jalen Richard told ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez after Sunday’s 30-17 defeat. “When are we going to get tired of getting our ass whooped?”

Yes, indeed. When?

Let’s hit the quick slants as hard as the Ravens smacked the Raiders:

(Note: Stats from NFL.com boxscore)

  • EJ Manuel did reasonably well in his first start. The backup quarterback’s improvisational skills paid off a number of times. His pocket presence, wiggle and 41-yard touchdown dime to Michael Crabtree was a thing of beauty.
  • The Football Gods certainly favored Joe Flacco. There’s no way his lame duck desperation throw after running for his life should have been completed, let alone a first down. That was a gift-wrapped interception. But perhaps that’s a damning sign for the Raiders secondary …
  • Crabtree is Mr. Reliable. The veteran has the sure hands and route running that is hard to ignore, no matter the QB.
  • Jared Cook missed his shot to be a hero against Denver and only dug a deeper hole when he coughed up the ball and it was housed by Baltimore. But kudos for him to answer all the media questions after the game.
  • Amari Cooper is yet again an afterthought on offense. Yes, Crabtree got open on an end zone throw that was just out of his reach, but so was Cooper on a deep post route. Perhaps Oakland should let Coop wear No. 15 next Sunday …
  • Jack Del Rio’s long pause and silence after he was asked if Raiders were ready to play during the postgame presser was telling. The normally rapid-fire answering coach had to take a sip of water before saying “Clearly, not what we wanted there.”
  • Ken Norton Jr. can the Raiders stop emulating the Seattle Seahawks defense? It’s about damn time Oakland create its own character and calling card on defense.
  • Sean Smith was toast again. Best deployed as a press-man corner who bumps and runs within the allowable five-yards of contact, Smith was burnt by fleet-footed wideouts. Oh, and what’s with having Smith play with cushion on 3-and-5? The man he was guarding did a quick out and, no surprise, first down.
  • Mike Wallace had 133 yards on 3 catches for the Ravens. The Raiders had 159 yards on 13 catches as an entire team. Those numbers should send a cold shiver down your spine if you’re a Raiders fan.
  • Karl Joseph and Khalil Mack paced the Raiders defense with nine and eight total tackles, respectively. But Oakland’s impact defenders didn’t have the game-altering play the defense so desperately needed.
  • Derek Carr is slated to return next week against the visiting Los Angeles Chargers — potentially. Along with Carr, the Raiders need corners David Amerson and Gareon Conley healthy.

Quote(s) Of Note:

“Just not playing well. Not playing well enough. Tough loss and not real happy about it.”

— Raiders Head Coach Jack Del Rio

“I was just trying to put the ball on my outside arm and the defender came through and swiped it, tackled me at the same time. That was my fault. Self-inflicted wounds is not something we need on this offense and that definitely was a huge mistake that turned into points for them.”

— Raiders tight end Jared Cook on the fumble

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