For the first time since 2002, the Las Vegas Raiders are 3-0. While the defense has improved, much of this is on the back of the passing game. Let’s take a brief look at how Derek Carr and Co. fared in Week 3.
Young wideouts steal the show
In a week where star tight end Darren Waller had just 54 receiving yards, the youngsters came to play. Much like last week, Henry Ruggs III starred again. With four catches for 78 yards, Ruggs was used in many different areas of the field. As such, he displayed some dazzling athleticism that led to highlight-reel receptions. He was also close to hooking up with Carr for another long touchdown late in the game. It seems as if Jon Gruden has finally found out how to use his speedster and the offense is significantly more explosive because of it.
For Bryan Edwards, he had a game very similar to the one he had in Week 1. He was a non-factor throughout much of the game. However, when it came time for a big play in crunch time, Carr looked his way. Edwards set up both of Daniel Carlson’s field goals in overtime with a couple of huge receptions. By the end of the game, Edwards led the team in receiving, with three catches totaling 89 yards.
What more needs to be said about Hunter Renfrow? Week in and week out, he displays the consistency that the Raiders offense needs. With five catches for 77 yards and a touchdown, Renfrow, as usual, took advantage of every matchup he faced. The touchdown catch showed off all of his nuanced route-running ability. Moving forward, expect more of the same from one of the NFL’s best slot wideouts.
— NFL (@NFL) September 26, 2021
Carr continues his dominance
With early talks of a potential MVP award in his future, Derek Carr added to his resume with this game. Aside from an early interception that resulted from a miscommunication, Carr was brilliant. He completed 26 out of 43 pass attempts for 386 yards and two touchdowns; Carr excelled at all levels.
Through the first three weeks, Carr is, at times, unrecognizable. While he’s always been efficient, this year, he appears to be more aggressive, confident, and poised in all scenarios.
While it was not an easy win by any means, the Raiders will have a chance to win every game if Carr can continue to play at this level. The passing offense is explosive, consistent, and confident. That is exactly what Raiders fans were hoping to see from their team when Gruden returned in 2018, and now that they have it, the entire NFL is officially on notice.
*Top Photo: Matt Aguirre/Las Vegas Raiders