The Las Vegas Raiders are back!
Week 1 of the NFL preseason kicked off with the Raiders welcoming the Seattle Seahawks to Allegiant Stadium. The first game of the year featured a welcome sight: Raider Nation is back! The fans stormed the stadium and packed the house.
There was a lot to look forward to for the first unofficial tune-up. Gus Bradley’s new scheme, high draft picks like Alex Leatherwood and Tre’von Moehrig, a healthy Henry Ruggs III, and Bryan Edwards. Here’s how the first scrimmage turned out for the Silver and Black.
With most of the offensive starters out, Zay Jones got it going early. The target of Gruden’s offseason hype showed up on the first drive with catches of 21, 28, and eight yards leading to a Trey Ragas touchdown from one yard out. It was an impressive drive to open Allegiant Stadium in front of Raider Nation.
On the next possession, the defense came strong. Nate Hobbs sacked Geno Smith and forced a fumble, which was later overturned. Nonetheless, it was a welcome sight for a defense that had trouble getting to the quarterback last year. Smith suffered an injury on that play and left the game.
Carl Nassib was flagged for roughing on the next play, extending the drive. The Seahawks punted following a series of incompletions and penalties.
Nathan Peterman ended the quarter with a sharp stat line: 9/12 with 95 yards and one sack. The Raiders had 125 yards of offense in just 15 minutes.
Raiders 7 – Seahawks 0
The Raiders opened the second quarter with a mix of run and pass. More efficient offense from Peterman and some powerful runs by Ragas and BJ Emmons led to a field goal by Dominik Eberle to put the Raiders up by 10.
The Raiders defense forced a three-and-out on the next drive. Tanner Muse batted down a pass blitzing off the edge. Darius Philon showed some flash stopping the run. Geno Smith didn’t have very much going early.
The Raiders continued to slice up the Seahawks’ defense with short plays. After the protection broke down, Peterman threw his first interception of the game on the Seattle 46 yard line and his arm was hit. He passed up a wide-open back in the flat.
The Raiders had one more drive after a Clelin Ferrell sack forced a Seattle punt. The Raiders ran a steady two-minute offense to score again on a Dominik Eberle 24-yard field goal. Peterman ended the half with 22 completions to 10 different receivers.
It was a Gruden-style offensive half. 51 plays, 290 yards, and over 23 minutes of possession in 30 minutes of game time.
Raiders 13 – Seahawks 0
The Seahawks opened the quarter with an impressive possession. The Raiders’ defense held for a fourth-down play before Dallin Leavitt missed a wide-open tackle leading to a touchdown.
A few back-and-forth possessions led to the Seahawks getting within range for a Jason Myers field goal. Myers missed the 50-yard attempt and set the Raiders up with great field position.
The Raiders were unable to capitalize and went three-and-out thanks to a penalty and a sack. The third quarter ended uneventfully outside of the lone Seattle touchdown. There were only 4 possessions between both teams in the entire period.
Raiders 13 – Seahawks 7
The fourth quarter started poorly for the Seahawks. A quick three-and-out via penalty and a nifty tackle for a loss by Amik Robertson forced a punt that barely made it over midfield.
A steady dose of Ragas and Emmons led the offensive drive. Emmons got the Raiders in first-and-goal from the two-yard line with 7:40 left in the game. He would finish the job.
Emmons ran it in from two yards out to put the Raiders up comfortably.
Sean Mannion took the reigns for the Seahawks on the next drive. Mannion only completed one ball en route to yet another punt for Seattle. Peterman stayed in the game with the Raiders short on signal-callers. A barrage of running plays followed to wind the game down. Case Cookus got in the action and got a handoff play of his own.
The Seahawks took the field and ended the game with some simple offense. Javin White took a helmet-to-helmet hit with 31 seconds to go, but walked off the field and appeared to be okay.
Final Score: Raiders 20 – Seahawks 7
*Top Photo: Erik Verduzco/Las Vegas Review-Journal